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Shoemaking is a traditional handicraft profession, which has now been largely superseded by industrial manufacture of footwear. Shoemakers or cordwainers (cobblers being, historically, those that repair shoes) may produce a range of footwear items, including shoes, boots, sandals, clogs and moccasins. Such items are generally made of leather, wood, rubber, plastic, jute or other plant material, and often consist of multiple parts for better durability of the sole, stitched to a leather upper.



Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations

Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 705-06.
  • A cobbler, * * * produced several new grins of his own invention, having been used to cut faces for many years together over his last.
  • To one commending an orator for his skill in amplifying petty matters, Agesilaus said: "I do not think that shoemaker a good workman that makes a great shoe for a little foot."
  • Him that makes shoes go barefoot himself.
    • Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy (1621), Democritus to the Reader, pg. 34. (Ed. 1887).
  • Ye tuneful cobblers! still your notes prolong,
    Compose at once a slipper and a song;
    So shall the fair your handiwork peruse,
    Your sonnets sure shall please—perhaps your shoes.
    • Lord Byron, English Bards and Scotch Reviewers, line 751.
  • I can tell where my own shoe pinches me.
  • The shoemaker makes a good shoe because he makes nothing else.
  • Si calceum induisses, tum demum sentires qua parte te urgeret.
    • If you had taken off the shoe then, at length you would feel in what part it pinched you.
    • Quoted by Erasmus as founded on the remarks of Paulus Æmilius when he divorced his wife.
  • Let firm, well hammer'd soles protect thy feet
    Through freezing snows, and rains, and soaking sleet;
    Should the big last extend the shoe too wide,
    Each stone will wrench the unwary step aside;
    The sudden turn may stretch the swelling vein,
    The cracking joint unhinge, or ankle sprain;
    And when too short the modish shoes are worn,
    You'll judge the seasons by your shooting corn.
  • I was not made of common calf,
    Nor ever meant for country loon;
    If with an axe I seem cut out,
    The workman was no cobbling clown;
    A good jack boot with double sole he made,
    To roam the woods, or through the rivers wade.
  • Marry because you have drank with the king,
    And the king hath so graciously pledged you,
    You shall no more be called shoemakers.
    But you and yours to the world's end
    Shall be called the trade of the gentle craft.
  • As he cobbled and hammered from morning till dark,
    With the footgear to mend on his knees,
    Stitching patches, or pegging on soles as he sang,
    Out of tune, ancient catches and glees.
  • One said he wondered that leather was not dearer than any other thing. Being demanded a reason: because, saith he, it is more stood upon than any other thing in the world.
    • William Hazlitt, Shakespeare Jest Books, Conceits, Clinches, Flashes and Whimzies, No. 86.
  • The title of Ultracrepidarian critics has been given to those persons who find fault with small and insignificant details.
  • The wearer knows where the shoe wrings.
  • A careless shoe string, in whose tie
    I see a wilde civility.
  • Cinderella's lefts and rights
    To Geraldine's were frights,
    And I trow
    The damsel, deftly shod,
    Has dutifully trod
    Until now.
  • Oh, where did hunter win
    So delicate a skin
    For her feet?
    You lucky little kid,
    You perished, so you did,
    For my sweet.
  • The fairy stitching gleams
    On the sides and in the seams,
    And it shows
    That Pixies were the wags
    Who tipped these funny tags
    And these toes.
  • Memento, in pellicula, cerdo, tenere tuo.
    • Remember, cobbler, to keep to your leather.
    • Martial, 3. 16. 6.
  • Quand nous veoyons un homme mal chaussé, nous disons que ce n'est pas merveille, s'il est chaussetier.
    • When we see a man with bad shoes, we say it is no wonder, if he is a shoemaker.
    • Michel de Montaigne, Essays, Book I, Chapter XXIV.
  • A chaque pied son soulier.
  • But from the hoop's bewitching round,
    Her very shoe has power to wound.
  • Ne supra crepidam judicaret.
    • Shoemaker, stick to your last.
    • Proverb quoted by Pliny the Elder, Historia Naturalis, XXXV. 10. 36. According to Cardinal Wiseman, it should read "a shoemaker should not go above his latchet." See his Points of Contact between Science and Art. Note under Sculpture. "Ne sutor supra crepidam." Given by Büchmann—Geflügelte Worte, as correct phrase. Ne sutor ultra crepidam, as quoted by Erasmus. Same idea in Non sentis, inquit, te ultra malleum loqui? "Do you not perceive that you are speaking beyond your hammer? To a blacksmith criticising music." Athenæus.
  • * * * And holding out his shoe, asked them whether it was not new and well made. "Yet," added he, "none of you can tell where it pinches me."
    • Plutarch, Lives, Volume II. Life of Æmilius Paulus.
  • Hans Grovendraad, an honest clown,
    By cobbling in his native town,
    Had earned a living ever.
    His work was strong and clean and fine,
    And none who served at Crispin's shrine
    Was at his trade more clever.
    • Jan van Ryswick, Hans Grovendraad; translated from the French by F. W. Ricord.
  • What trade are you?
    Truly, sir, in respect of a fine workman, I am but, as you would say, a cobbler.
  • What trade art thou? answer me directly.
    A trade, sir, that, I hope, I may use with a safe conscience; which is, indeed sir, a mender of bad soles.
  • Thou art a cobbler, art thou?
    Truly, sir, all that I live by is with the awl: * * * I am indeed, sir, a surgeon to old shoes.
  • Wherefore art not in thy shop to-day?
    Why dost thou lead these men about the streets?
    Truly, sir, to wear out their shoes, to get myself into more work.
  • You cannot put the same shoe on every foot.
  • When bootes and shoes are torne up to the lefts,
    Coblers must thrust their awles up to the hefts.
  • Rap, rap! upon the well-worn stone,
    How falls the polished hammer!
    Rap, rap! the measured sound has grown
    A quick and merry clamor.
    Now shape the sole! now deftly curl
    The glassy vamp around it,
    And bless the while the bright-eyed girl
    Whose gentle fingers bound it!

See also

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