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Plaque Embroidered with "Boundless Longevity" Written by the Kangxi Emperor

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Period: 18th year of the Kangxi reign (1679), Qing dynasty (1644–1911)
Medium: Wood

In celebration of his grandmother Empress Dowager Xiaozhuangwen’s sixty-sixth birthday on the eighth day of the second lunar month of the eighteenth year of his reign (1679), the Kangxi Emperor wrote the four characters Wanshou wujiang (boundless longevity) and ordered to have them embroidered for a plaque. This birthday present was displayed at the Palace of Compassion and Tranquility (Cining gong), the residence of the empress dowager. The plaque is signed with an inscription that may be translated to read, “Respectfully presented by Xuanye, your humble Grandson Emperor, on the eighth day of the second lunar month of the eighteenth year of the Kangxi reign”. The seal mark may be translated to read, "Emperor's Seal of Respect for Parents" (Huangdi zunqin zhi bao). The words on the plaque reflect the emperor’s amicable relationship with and deep respect for his grandmother.  

Website version edited by Zhuang Ying and Adam J. Ensign

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