The form of the hinged ornament appears to be based on Yuan dynasty prototypes, such as the example carved on both halfs with a chilong, illustrated in Zhongguo Yuqi Quanji - 5 - Sui, Tang Ming, Hebei, 1994, p. 113, no. 171. As with the present ornament, the two halfs are joined by a loop.
The decoration of the present ornament would have made it a fitting wedding gift, as the dragon and phoenix represent a man and a woman, and the phrase carved on the reverse would have been an appropriate wish for the couple's future. The motif of a box and lingzhi is also associated with weddings. A similarly decorated ornament of this type was sold in these rooms, 13 September 2012, lot 1095 (part).