Late 19th century netsuke of resting Hotei leaning on his bag of gifts and holding a fan in his hands. Hotei was a historical Chinese monk allegedly living in Wuyue kingdom in the 10th century and known for his jolly nature and love of children, he is considered to be an incarnation of Buddha Maitreya - the Buddha of the Future. Excellent strong carving, great face, beautiful depiction of the folds of his robe, wonderful wear and patina. Signed HOGYOKU on the bottom - probably the artist is Hogyokusai listed in NETSUKE & INRO ARTISTS AND HOW TO READ THEIR SIGNATURES by George Lazarnick, p. 476. Length 1 3/4 inches.