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Early 20th century

The humourosly carved mask with his characteristic hat, stained dark brown, with collection label to the back.


H. 3.6 cm

The Peter E. Müller Collection, Küsnacht


Max Rutherston, Japanese Masks, Peter E. Müller, 2017, no. 159 (ill.)


Ebisu (えびす, 恵比須, 恵比寿, 夷, 戎), also transliterated Webisu (ゑびす, see historical kana orthography) or called Hiruko (蛭子) or Kotoshiro-nushi-no-kami (事代主神), is the Japanese god of fishermen and luck. He is one of the Seven Gods of Fortune (七福神, Shichifukujin), and the only one of the seven to originate purely from Japan without any Buddhist or Taoist influence.


Noh (能, Nō, derived from the Sino-Japanese word for "skill" or "talent") is a major form of classical Japanese dance-drama that has been performed since the 14th century. 

Noh is often based on tales from traditional literature with a supernatural being transformed into human form as a hero narrating a story. Noh integrates masks, costumes and various props in a dance-based performance, requiring highly trained actors and musicians. Emotions are primarily conveyed by stylized conventional gestures while the iconic masks represent the roles such as ghosts, women, deities, and demons. Written in late middle Japanese, the text "vividly describes the ordinary people of the twelfth to sixteenth centuries".

Stained Noh Mask Netsuke of Ebisu

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