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Magic Shoes And Boots: The Soles Of Mythology

Magic Shoes And Boots: The Soles Of Mythology

Interest in the history and archaeology of ancient footwear began in the 17th century and today the formal study of footwear is called ‘calceology.’ This field of science includes interpreting ancient footwear against social and cultural contexts, understanding the technical aspects associated with leather trades, and the reconstruction of archaeological artifact footwear.

Given a moment of thought, anyone will agree one does not really need a calceologist to confirm that perhaps no single invention has enhanced humankind’s outdoor survival, better than shoes and boots. While strong leather soles enabled hunters to run in forests and jungles chasing fast moving prey, to climb sharp cliffs and thorny trees collecting nutritious eggs and to wade in rock pools and beaches carefree of urchins, on a metaphoric level, shoes are found at grassroot level of ancient religions, mythology and folklore.

“Cinderella,” is the modern name for a traditional fairytale known as “The Little Glass Slipper.” (CC BY-SA 2.0)

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