Shoes

The ankle shoes were based on a left shoe dated to the 8-9th century from Staraya Ladoga, Russia (Martell 1992; Roesdahl and Wilson 1992; 'Vikingernes Rusland' exhibition, Sigtuna Sweden: pers. obs. 1994). It is of cattle hide with a two piece (sole and upper) construction, plus a triangular insert over the instep.

Reconstruction: The cut-out pattern of this shoe was published by Ojateva (1965), though this pattern was unavailable at the time of making. Ankle shoes with similar features (pointed heel, false vamp seam etc.) eg. from Oseberg and York, served as a basis for the design. The side ?latchet fastening is an unusual feature for a shoe of this early date, but is replicated in a fragmentary ?10th century shoe from Haithabu (Groenman-van Waateringe 1984). As the fastening itself has not survived, it was reconstructed as leather lachets (ties), based on similar later examples (Grew and de Neergaard 1988). Construction was inside out (as a turn shoe), with hand sewn seams of authentic type following archaeological evidence (Grew and de Neergaard 1988), the materials were vegetable tanned cattle hide and raw linen thread. The original shoe bore stitchmarks around the ankle opening, these were put to decorative use by topstitching with coloured wool, other suggestions for the purpose of this feature ar e fastening a (cloth?) lining, or a strengthening leather strip (MacGregor 1982).

References


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