Korean Antique Painted Box with a Charming Deer Couple under a Stately Pine Tree, with a Butterfly Lock, and luxuriously silk-lined. The butterfly is an ancient symbol of happiness in Korea. The pine tree and the deer are symbols of longevity, and a pair of deer is a symbol of love. These two meaning combine here to give a beautiful rendition of 'eternal love'. These types of boxes are very rare because they were made only during a very short period of time at the very end of the Joseon Dynasty, in the last decade of the 19th Century and first decade of the 20th Century (1890s and 1900s). The paintings are custom made for the boxes and are then mounted onto the boxes. Similar examples of painted boxes can be seen in the book, Korean Furniture and Culture (pages 85 and 86) by Yoon Bokcha, Chi Soon, and Park Youngsoon; and Korean Collection, University of Michigan Museum of Art (page 273). 16 x 9.5 x 2.5 inches, 40.5 x 24 x 6.5 cm.