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Detail from: An Amorous Bath. From the album Red Shoes. Ink and colours on paper, 19th c., Anonymous, Collection Ferdinand Bertholet


The woman in this painting looks old. Not sure if I got her age right. It would be interesting if she is.


The source where I got these paintings say a pillow book was given from a mother to daughter in her wedding, meant to teach a young bride about the art of love making, but this particular painting makes me doubt the said purpose because it features one woman making love with two men simultaneously, not something a wife should learn.


The setting in this painting is interesting: outdoor, wide open, and daytime. I suppose these features enhance the eroticism of the painting.

Notice how the obsession with small feet is manifested in all these erotic paintings.

Chinese erotic art . Qing dynasty

Many pillow books were destroyed during the early days of Communist China. Most of the surviving erotic scrolls have been cut into individual pieces and sold as small paintings which makes this complete piece even more valuable.

Chinese Erotic Pillow Book - Northern China - 19th century - Given by her mother on her wedding day, a pillow book was meant to teach a young bride about the art of love making. This rare museum-quality 19th century piece is composed of 12 masterfully painted scenarios depicting a new bride and her groom (and their servant) on paper, mounted to a long silk scroll.