Tibetan Buddhist teachings were periodically patronized by Chinese rulers of the Yuan, MIng and Qing dynasties. Sometimes, the motivation was religious. At others, political ends were at stake. It is likely that Simhavaktra sculpture was part of the Qianlong emperor’s practice of Tibetan Buddhism, while he was a student of the lama Rolpay Dorje. It may once have stood in his summer palace in Chengde.