Netsuke: Originally Japanese, a counterbalance or fob for the strings of a tobacco (or similar) pouch which hang over the sash of ones kimono.
Visit www.netsuke.org for a more complete definition.
This is 42 mm tall, and has some markings by the tail of the serpent (shown below).
|Matsuyama, "Pine Mountain"
If you know more about these things, please tell me what I've got.
I don't know the symbolism. I don't know the age.
It has a smoky aroma, which is noticeable when it has been in a sealed container.
The anatomical oddities may be traditional, or an affectation of the artist. I dunno.
How I found it:
Karen, Bernie and I were wandering the Las Olas strip in Fort Lauderdale one spring day, after eating too many rich crepes for brunch. To those of you who may not know, Las Olas is a strip of stores and galleries where you don't want to ask what it costs, and you don't need it, anyhow.
In one antiquerie, I noticed a glass case full of ivory carvings. Among the traditional Japanese scenes, and explicit erotic carvings, I found this little fellow. I don't know why it appealed to me, but I wanted it. Bernie and Karen encouraged me to buy it for myself as a birthday present. We bargained them down to only somewhat more than I suspected it was worth, but could afford.
Contact me at nospam@DanKlarmann.com