Monday, February 26, 2007

Lodičky, or Calling All Shoe Experts


There is a section in Jaroslav Seifert's memoirs in which he describes his early encounters with Toyen. First, he'd see an intriguing figure in rough work clothes going by on the street--apparently she was working in a soap factory. Toyen next appeared in his life when she came to join the Devětsil group. At this juncture she was rather fashionably dressed, wearing a type of shoe known as lodičky ("little boats").

Štěpanka has enlightened me that the term lodičky refers to shoes without straps or buckles, which one just slips on and which are... sort of boat-shaped. They may or may not have high heels; the important factor is that most of the top of one's foot is exposed.
I've certainly owned shoes of this type, but I have no idea at all whether they have a name in English. Any ideas how to translate this?

And then, there are also střevičky, which I haven't yet figured out, but which led me to this interesting site for reproductions of historical footgear and saddlery! Click on Shoe and you'll find a vast selection of gothic, Renaissance, and baroque shoes. I am very tempted, but this doesn't translate lodičky or střevičky for me...

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8 Comments:

Blogger Kristen said...

I'd say they are simply pumps.

February 26, 2007 11:13 PM  
Blogger Karla said...

My father agrees. {I had always wondered what pumps were, but never had any reason to look them up.) I can't fathom where this word can have come from. It sounds so peculiar. Little boats are so much more evocative. Or is it that they are little boats that need to be pumped out now and then?

February 26, 2007 11:47 PM  
Blogger P'tit-Loup said...

Ha Ha! That was funny Karla! I agree that pump seem to describe ledicky. As for the other, I have no clue.

February 27, 2007 6:47 AM  
Anonymous Amy said...

I agree with everyone that they're pumps. Here's another name shoes like those are called in some catalogues: skimmers.

It seems strange to call a shoe the same name as a gull-type bird with an underbite!

February 27, 2007 3:10 PM  
Blogger Kristen said...

Ah, yeah, Amy's got another word I forgot about. Though I think skimmers are usually pumps with either a very low heel or no heel.

February 27, 2007 10:01 PM  
Blogger Karla said...

The shoe-lore of my readers amazes me. I can tell the difference between shoes, boots, and sandals, and I can point out Earth Shoes and Birkenstocks, but that's about all. (Well, ok, I can differentiate a tennis shoe from an athletic shoe and a cowboy boot from a construction boot.)

March 03, 2007 10:07 AM  
Blogger morskyjezek said...

I think that a retrn to the shoe museum in Zlin is in order.

March 04, 2007 9:00 PM  
Blogger Karla said...

You're the one who's been to the shoe museum, not I. But I should go.

March 05, 2007 9:05 PM  

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