Additional Views

Type: Clothing - Garment
Object Name: Robe
Local Name: jifu
Place Made: Asia: East Asia, China
Period: 19th century
Date: 1800 - 1900
Dimensions: L 138 cm x W 129 cm
Materials: Metal thread; silk floss
Techniques: Embroidered; couched; satin stitch; kesi; slit tapestry woven; tapestry woven; painted; hand-sewn; satin
ID Number: T96.0072
Credit: Gift of Betty Plewman

Full-length, semi-formal robes, or jifu, were worn by all in attendance at court or in service of the Manchu imperial government and were the official Chi’ing period costume. The three elements that decorate this robe – oceans, mountains and the heavens – symbolize the physical order and harmony of the universe. A dragon represents the power of the emperor. The five-clawed “lung dragon” suggests it was worn by a member of the imperial family or high-ranking official.