China is used to symbolize sex throughout the play and Horner and his lovers use it as a code word. When Horner takes Margery aside in Covent Garden, stealing her away under Pinchwife’s nose, he gives her some “China oranges” which she proudly takes back and presents to her husband. Although Horner does not actually have sex with Margery in this scene, Pinchwife correctly interprets his intention towards her as sexual and takes the gift of a “China orange” as an insult. He believes that Horner has “squeezed his orange and given it back to him,” which suggests that Horner has made use of something which belongs to Pinchwife; in this case, his wife. The significance of the term “china” as a sexual innuendo comes again later in the play when Horner and Lady Fidget pretend to fight over Horner’s china collection, when they are really having sex, while Sir Jasper, Lady Fidget’s husband, waits innocently outside the door. Horner indicates that “china” is an agreed upon “cue” between him and the ladies and he knows to follow Lady Fidget into the room when she says that she wants some of his china. This innuendo effectively deceives Sir Jasper because china shopping is considered to be a dainty, innocent, and feminine hobby and this supports the general façade of purity and sexual aversion that the “honorable” ladies (Lady Fidget, Mrs. Dainty Fidget, and Mrs. Squeamish) maintain throughout the play. The use of the term china furthers the impression that the “honorable” ladies and Horner mask their promiscuity and deviance behind a veneer of sexual innocence and a disdain for sex, while, in fact, the opposite is true.