Rather unusual 19th century Nagoya school netsuke of rats enjoying rice from Daikoku’s bag - 3 on top of the bag and 2 seen through the torn canvas. Signed ITSUMIN on the bottom - Hokyudo Itsumin was an excellent carver trained at Nagoya school - see NETSUKE & INRO ARTISTS AND HOW TO READ THEIR SIGNATURES by George Lazarnick, p. 525. Most of the artist’s work is in wood, ivory netsuke by him are rare. Fantastic quality work, wonderful rendition of their bodies, faces and fur, eyes are inlaid with black horn. Extraordinary detailing - see delicately incised stitches along the seams of the bag and perfectly captured rippling of the canvas on the top, beautiful wear consistent with age, superb patina. Great sculpture by master artist. Height 1 1/16 inches.