The most famous example of footwear is Cinderella’s glass slippers. As a child, many wondered: after all, the shoe could fit many girls in size?
The most cunning adults explained that crystal shoes should follow all the curves of the foot, and since they are transparent, you can immediately see whether the shoes fit well or not. But this did not fit in with the “bloody version” of this fairy tale, where, in order to become the wife of the prince, Cinderella’s half-sisters cut off either their fingers or their heel. I had to admit that the prince was rather narrow-minded, and marriage to such would be a very dubious joy.
But unlike Cinderella’s shoes, silver shoes from the fairy tale «The Wizard of the Emerald City» sit on any leg, as if sewn on it. They had to faithfully serve their mistress. their main property is that if you hit them with their heels and say where you want to be, they will take you there in three steps. True, they themselves, most likely, will get lost along the way.
In Andersen’s darkest fairy tale, «Red Shoes», the girl Karen is sewn with real shoes out of pity. But after Karen is taken in by a rich lady, the shoes are thrown away. Later, Karen notices the lovely, good quality shoes on the princess, remembering happy moments in her old shoes.
Then she is bought shoes of this color, quite by accident, but the heroine is extremely happy with this outcome of events. So Karen wears them to confirmation, then to church, despite the ban. But because they look like princess shoes, Karen is punished. Now her shoes begin to dance every time she puts them on. Later, Karen dares to wear them to the ball, events unfold in such a way that, as a punishment for her vanity, Karen will dance to death.
Karen manages to dance to the executioner’s house and persuade them to cut off her legs. Then she goes to church and the angel praises her. A happy ending. The girl was punished, severely punished, and it is difficult for a modern child to explain why — she did not commit a single evil deed. She liked the way she looked in red shoes, that’s all.
Interestingly, at the end of the twentieth century, the Ukrtelefilm studio filmed a fairy tale with the same name, but … Shoes are needed there to magically “trample out” all the rot and all poisonous mushrooms in the forest and grow magic grass in their place, and you can put them on only the most honest, resourceful and courageous person, and then after trials. The forest king keeps these shoes. The tale is based on several folk Ukrainian stories, however, it is not clear whether the story of the red shoes refers to them or whether someone so creatively protested against Andersen’s tale.
In another modern fairy tale, which has already become a cult television series The Tenth Kingdom, the main character is helped by the troll shoes she stole — they make the one who wears them invisible for a while. This helps Virginia, for example, to steal her father and the prince of a fairyland turned into a dog. But shoes have another property — they are addictive … for those who suffer from self-doubt and consider themselves unworthy to be noticed by other people. So with the help of these shoes you can do a little psychoanalysis. Their third magical property is when you put them somewhere where they themselves are not visible (in the bosom, in a backpack), they are not visible at all, that is, even the outlines, as if they had folded and become flat.
Magic shoes are not the only ones in the collection of the king of trolls. Both he and his family are simply obsessed with shoes and are genuinely outraged to find that Virginia’s shoes are worn out: how can you treat a wonderful thing like that? They even torture the trolls with iron shoes, having previously heated them on fire. This is surprising, because in folk tales, trolls just go barefoot.
By the way, iron shoes also appear in Russian fairy tales. In Finist the Bright Falcon, the main character learns that she has reached the place where she will find her lost lover when she takes off ten pairs of iron shoes.
So in fairy tales, shoes basically bring some kind of dark part to the plot. But interesting enough nonetheless. Read more, find out and choose comfortable and comfortable shoes!