The attachments at each end of the handle depict Nereids riding hippocamps (sea horses) and bringing a shield and a cuirass (body armor) to Achilles. Because the mythological reference is to the sea, the vase to which the handle belonged may have contained water—a podanypter (foot basin), for example.
[Until 1978, with Galerie Antike Kunst Palladion, Basel, Switzerland]; acquired in 1978, purchased from the Galerie Palladion.
Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1978. "One Hundred Eigth Annual Report of the Trustees for the Fiscal Year July 1, 1977 through June 30, 1978." Annual Report of the Trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 108: p. 45.
Mertens, Joan R. 1985. "Greek Bronzes in the Metropolitan Museum of Art." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, 43(2): no. 25, p. 41.