This is a finely carved boxwood netsuke depicting Tanuki, seated, wearing a kimono, with a striker on his right hand, getting ready to beat his hairy distended scrotum that is resting on a cushion as if it were a mokugyo. Very skillfully done miniature sculpture that is signed Juzan within an oval reserve on the bottom of the netsuke. The cord holes (himotoshi) are lined up with natural material.
Juzan, is a go used by Ishikawa Komei (1852 - 1913), a pupil of Masamitsu, considered the finest carving artist of the Meiji Period. He studied the painting of Kano Sosen, and became the first professor of art at the Tokyo Academy of Arts. He was later appointed artist to the Imperial court.
Netsuke measures 0.90 inches (2.3cm) wide, 1.46 inches (3.7cm) long, and 1.28 inches (3.2cm) tall. It is in excellent preserved condition, as may be seen in the posted photos.
Note: A reference to Ishikawa Komei and his signature may be found on page 661 of Lazarnick's 'Netsuke and Inro Artists, and How to Read their Signatures'