Fun Facts about Shoes


History is full of interesting tidbits about shoes, the way shoes functioned, and shoe-related superstitions. Historian Ruth Tanenhaus, who edited the catalog for a 1978 exhibition in New York City called “The Great American Foot,” offers up these fun facts:

  • The earliest shoes dating back to the Paleolithic Era (think “cavemen”) were crafted out of animal skins and grasses.

  • In Roman times, shoes became prized artistic creations that were buried with their owners.

  • Pointed shoes became popular in the Middle Ages because they were thought to fend off witchcraft.

  • A man in some Arab countries used to be able to divorce simply by placing his wife’s shoes outside and publicly stating that he’d cast her off just as he would a slipper.

  • In American colonial times, people believed that placing a pair of heavy boots on one’s abdomen was certain to relieve a stomach ache.

Protection and comfort

From the beginning of time, shoes have served one main purpose: to protect your feet. We are, like the cavemen, still creating protective footwear out of animal skins! Over the centuries, fashion has come to play an important role in how we choose footwear. Our advice even in these modern times is that you should never sacrifice comfort for fashion. Okay, wear those stiletto heels on occasion. But minimize your time in shoes that hurt and always think protection and comfort first, fashion second.

If you have difficulty wearing shoes because of bunions, hammertoes, diabetes, or foot pain that won’t go away, get relief with a visit to the board-certified podiatrists at Affiliated Foot & Ankle Center. With two offices in Monmouth County, New Jersey and early, late, and Saturday morning hours, getting an appointment with us is a “shoe”-in.

Call us in Howell or Jackson at (732) 905-1110. You can also visit us online to request an appointment with Dr. Samantha Boyd, Dr. Hal Ornstein, Dr. Dan Phan, or Dr. Joseph Saka.