Ancient Shoes

What Might Jesus Have Worn?

Footwear worn two thousand years ago in the Middle East were of two kinds ordinarily. The traveler might wear hard hob-nailed sandals to make them stand up to long journeys. The day-to-day wear was more likely to be a camel-skin shoe with a sole made of palm-bark or rush. Neither shoe nor sandal were worn with socks. The Jews had brought back from Mesopotamia, the half-boot to which some later modified to include the four bands of the Romans. For inside wear, the common bedroom slipper, with which we are so familiar, was sometimes worn. However, in the sanctuary of the temple and in all holy places, everyone, regardless of rank, was required to walk barefoot.

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