Boots

In the 1770’s and 1780’s, boots are again seen in everyday dress, though they were worn primarily for walking and never for a formal occasion. As the period moved toward an atmosphere of revolution, there was a natural swing to boots for fashion as well as military wear. Boots were, however, generally worn only for morning. Boots such as the Hessian and the Wellington predominated for the remainder of the period. The top boot became the trademark of the English, but because it was only practical with breeches, most men wore the riding boot with the new trousers.

Women’s boots were not their principal wear. In 1800, a half boot that went to the knee appeared for women. These boots were put on with the aid of hooks, and worn for riding and driving.

Boots were also made into rights and lefts, but this happened later than with men’s shoes. In 1800, for example, soldiers were told to wear their boots (which were straights) on alternate feet on alternate days, so they would last longer.