Between the eighth and sixth centuries B.C., elaborate bronze vessels were among the preeminent creations of Greek artists. This foot was probably one of three supporting an extremely large, shallow basin. Mythological creatures such as the sphinx here and the griffin (1972.118.54) nearby should be understood as guardian figures not simply decoration.
Mertens, Joan R., Dr. 2001. "Recent Acquisitions, A Selection: 2000-2001." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, 59(2): p. 9.
Metropolitan Museum of Art. 2001. "One Hundred Thirty-first Annual Report of the Trustees for the Fiscal Year July 1, 2000 through June 30, 2001." Annual Report of the Trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 131: p. 19.
Mertens, Joan R. 2002. "An Early Greek Bronze Sphinx Support." Metropolitan Museum Journal, 37: pp. 23-26, figs. 1-3.
Picón, Carlos A. 2007. Art of the Classical World in the Metropolitan Museum of Art: Greece, Cyprus, Etruria, Rome no. 35, pp. 52, 145, New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art.