Combination footed sewing and writing box of black lacquer. Hinged top opens to reveal an inset tray, with gold paint around top edges. Tray has 15 compartments for sewing items. Desk opens to a scarlet velvet writing surface.
The Chinese may well have invented the compass; it was in use in the 12th-13th centuries there. This one is not a navigation compass but was used in feng sui. It is a dry card type perhaps modeled on the European types introduced into China in the 16th century.