Whenever the Emperor of China goes in state to transact public business, to receive ambassadors, or to hold a court, he is carried in the same kind of a sedan chair as are commonly used in Europe, and which, as well as umbrellas, have obviously been first introduced from China. The soft luxury of an Indian palanquin is unknown to the Chinese. By means of poles attached to each other the Emperor’s chair, on grand occasions, is carried by eight pair of bearers, sometimes by four pair, but on ordinary occasions he has no more than two pair. They are generally the stoutest and tallest men that can be found, and are dressed in a long yellow vest, which is the colour assumed by the imperial family.
The Project Gutenberg EBook of Picturesque Representations of the Dress and Manners of the Chinese, by William Alexander Published 1814