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I'm thinking about a mnemonic for 令, and my wife mentioned that in former times the emperor's orders were written on tablets called 箭牌. However, I cannot find any information about this word, and the Google image search does not yield any tablets. How are these tablets referred to in Chinese?

I now that there's also 诏书, but this seems to relate more to orders written on paper. Am I right?

I tried to find a translation or even the right word by googling "emperor order tablet ", but nothing showed up. As I'm not a native English speaker: Am I missing the right word?

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I think you are talking about 令牌 and 诏书.

令牌 is something like badge. It doesn't have any order on it, but just used to identify the person who carry it.

诏书 is orders written on paper, bamboo or something else.

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    +1. I would like to mention that some 令牌 in certain time in hitrory can be a form of giving order – Alex Sep 15 '15 at 16:44

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