I think the carved and painted face on this guy is just terrific, perhaps all the better for missing what I believe was once a glued-on nose! He looks about as good natured as a fellow could be, and with that big smile, large ears, and Frankenstein-like nails right above the ears (wrapped with thread), he looks like a bit of a goofball too!
Definitely a marionette, with some of his strings long ago snipped but still attached (they would pull right out should one desire to remove them, though the one attached to his head is very useful for hanging him up.) I believe he is Italian, representing a Carabinieri (Italian policeman), early 20th century I believe. His outfit is entirely hand-stitched of purple satin--well faded--with red ribbon trim. I would hang him in or near an entryway, where I'd feel genially greeted and guarded, coming and going!
12 3/8" t x approx 5" w with arms by sides. Well worn in a great way; in good shape structurally and not fragile.