DESCRIPTION: This rare and fantastic antique Japanese Tonkotsu, or tobacco box, has been crafted from wood in the form of the three “no evil” monkeys, with a beautifully carved “Speak no Evil” monkey serving as the main tobacco container. “See No Evil” forms the ojime and “Hear No Evil” forms the netsuke to complete the set. Each of these has been meticulously carved with inlaid eyes and finely delineated fur. The large monkey wears a decorative jacket and sports the artist’s signature on his rump. These tobacco boxes were worn by men like an inro, suspended from a belt or sash, and this example is one of the finest mingei (folk art) pieces we have come across in some time. Mid 19th C., in very good condition with no restorations; one age fissure on large monkey’s shoulder. DIMENSIONS: Large Monkey is 3 ½” in height (9 cm).