Glossary of Footwear Terminology, U-V


A B C D E F G H I J-L M-N O P-Q R S T U-V W-Z
International Language Terminology Cross-Reference General Glossary of Footwear Types

Underpronation
You strike the ground as other runners do, but your foot doesn't complete the motion needed to absorb shock. Underpronation is associated with a rigid, high-arched foot. [www.eastbay.com/help/glossary]

Unhege-Sceo
See High Shoe.  Although this meaning seems traditional, it is somewhat speculative, since there is no clear link to the High shoes.  Sceo seems to be an older academic form for scoh The term is Anglo-Saxon/Old English.

Upper (Overleathers)
  1. The portion of a shoe or boot which covers the top of the foot. It normally consists of an outside and a lining with Typical sub-divisions of an upper in, for example, an ordinary Oxford shoe are: outside - cap, vamp, tongue, quarters, back-strap; lining- vamp lining, quarte: lining, tongue lining; there may also be side linings. [Thornton/Swann, 1983][Webber, 1989][Vass]
  2. In some types of construction (e.g. Nailed), the Uppers can even include the Insole. Everything above the sole, except in the case of single-piece shoes where the upper then is counted from the imprint line. [Thornton/Swann, 1983]
  3. All the leather above the sole and covering parts or the all of the foot and leg. [Goubitz, 2001]
  4. In modern shoes, the leather/synthetic leather or mesh material above the Midsole that encloses the foot. [www.eastbay.com/help/glossary]
Upper features
Items that either reinforce or decorate the upper: linen lining, eyelet facing with underlay, collar, lining leather. [Vass]

Upper leather
Leather from the highest-quality layer of the hide, tanned with chrome salts. It is used to make the upper. Upper leather is normally between one-fifteenth and one-twentieth of an inch (1.2-1.5 mm) thick. [Vass]

Upper reinforcers
Leather or textile stiffeners for those regions of the upper where the danger of stretching is greatest. [Vass]

Upright (see also Straights)
Shoes that are made to fit either foot, as opposed to those that are made 'right and left'.  The term is in use from the 17th century among shoemakers. [OED 2d Ed.][Saguto]   See also Last, Upright or Straight

V-back soles
The distinctive sole shape for early medieval Scandinavian shoes, where the sole came up behind the heel of the foot in an inverted V shape. Also found in some Coptic shoes.

Vamp (Vampethe, Vampet , Vawmpe, Vampey, Avant pied, Forefoot, Pedana, Pedula) See Forefoot
  1. The front section of a shoe's upper covering the wearer's toes and part of the instep. The earliest use of this term, in a shoemaking context, in English was at least by 1654 [OED 2d Ed.]. It likely derives from an older term "vampey" (c15th C), and from that "Vaumpe"/"Waumpe", from the Anglo-Norman "avanpie" (or "avant-pied" - "before the foot") and refers to the portion of the footed hose that covers the foot from the instep and ankle forward. If there was another term used for the vamp of a shoe before 1654, I do not as yet know what that is -- however see Forefoot (q.v.)
  2. If the upper does not have a separate Vamp and Quarters, the front of the upper can be referred to as the "Vamp portion" rather than the vamp. Do NOT use "Forepart" as this refers to the sole, not the upper. [Saguto]
  3. For one piece uppers, use Forepart [Thornton/Swann, 1983]
  4. The part of the tipper covering the fore part of the foot up to the instep. [Goubitz, 2001]
  5. The Vamp "is all the piece that covers the top of the foot instep, the top of the shoe at the tying place toe and toe lining, the lower part of the vamp [Holme, 1688]
  6. The front of the shoe, consisting of one piece (in the slip-on) or several (toe cap, vamp insertion). Its shape depends on the shoe style. [Vass]
Vamp Seam (also Centre seam over vamp)
A real or decorative seam running from the toe to instep of the forefoot.

Vamp throat
The leather over the top edge of the forefoot, generally where a shoe’s tongue or buttons might be attached.

  1. The central portion of the rear end of the vamp, the section resting on the instep.
  2. An extension of the vamp reaching up the shin; especially on boots. [Goubitz, 2001]
Vamp Wings
  1. The sides of the vamp extending backwards either side of the throat to join the quarters to the side seam(s). [Thornton/Swann, 1983]
  2. Some vamps, like those of certain mules, extend with 'wings' towards the back, or shoes with vamp extensions that reach backwards into the quarters. [Goubitz, 2001]
Variant Model
Within a type, shoes may have a diversity of forms. [Goubitz, 2001]

Variant Type
Within a type, the shape and placement of the fastening may differ from model to model. [Goubitz, 2001]

Vampet
(See Vamp)

Vampethe
(See Vamp)

Vampey
(See Vamp)

Vawmpe
(See Vamp)

Veldtschoen (stitch-down construction)
A Dutch term for a Stitchdown shoe, which has been extended by some to refer to all shoes made of Stitchdown construction (q.v.). Veldtschoen means field shoe. The name is derived from the Boer farmers in South Africa in the nineteenth century. In a "Welted Veldtschoen", the lining is welted (q.v.) to the insole and then the outside is flanged outwards and stitched to the welt and sole. Although the method is traditionally South African it was used for repairs on early shoes where upper patches were required, and also to finish off the attachment of the extreme points of the long 15th century poulaines. Also an amateur or cheap construction used 17-18th centuries, especially for children's shoes (see Stitchdown)[Thornton/Swann, 1983][Goubitz, 2001]

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Footwear of the Middle Ages - Glossary of Footwear Terminology U-V, Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2001, 2005 I. Marc Carlson. 
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