Archer’s rings, called ‘she’ were worn in ancient times on the right hand thumb to protect it from the bow string when firing an arrow. They were widely used in the Shang and Zhou dynasties, when they were made of hide and elephant bone. Only high-ranking commanders wore archer’s rings made of jade.
The Emperors of the Qing dynasty were descendants of the nomadic Manchu tribe, who highly regarded horse riding and archery. As a result, archer’s rings became important and very valued decorative objects, culminating during the reign of the Qianlong emperor.