• Germany's news in English
 
app_header_v3

300-year-old shoes found in castle wall during restoration

DDP/The Local · 13 Apr 2010, 08:40

Published: 13 Apr 2010 08:40 GMT+02:00

Eight women’s, men’s and children’s shoes were uncovered within the wall during restorations at the Liedberg Palace in Korschenbroich, a spokesperson for the Neuss district authority said.

Scholars working for the authority believe that the shoes were immured 12 metres high in the wall around 1708, she said.

While most of the shoes were heavily worn, they were high-value Baroque models that probably belonged to the family of the castle lord.

Two other pairs of shoes from the 19th century were also found in the wall.

According to the spokesperson, the find is not uncommon. Scholars frequently find shoes in walls during monument restoration – but there is no official explanation for their presence.

Story continues below…

Some clues point to a superstitious, symbolic ritual meant to ward off bad luck for the building’s residents or builders.

Neuss authorities said the shoes will be cleaned, examined, documented and later placed back inside the palace wall.

DDP/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

16:17 April 13, 2010 by berlinski
They just don't make them like that anymore.
19:27 April 13, 2010 by dbert4
Back then, they weren't coming from China......
06:25 April 14, 2010 by vonSchwerin
They're going to put the shoes back in the wall? Is there a glut of 300-year-old domestic artifacts and and material culture objects in Germany's museums? Germany must have too many antiquities if restorers can just take valuable finds and cement them back into walls!
21:56 April 14, 2010 by cocovelvet
Yep, vonSchwein !! ...... or else they must be verdammt angsthasen ( cowards) to just want to plaster back those shoes into the walls coz they're probably verdammt afraid of the bad luck which might strike them for taking them out of those walls !!??...... theeheee !!!
02:16 April 15, 2010 by ya-ha
It might have been an intimate family act or symol of a promice. Its is nice that they choose to respect what ever was the intent of those who placed them. May they stay there for ever
19:48 April 15, 2010 by snorge
Don't forget to put in some Dr. Scholl's® shoe inserts before you wall them up. That way our great grand kids won't have to put up with the smell....
14:01 April 16, 2010 by davidmichelmore
The purpose of hiding the shoes is to keep away witches. They are often hidden in or near chimneys, because witches were thought to come down chimneys, and are often children's shoes, as seems to be the case with the shoe in the photograph. I have found many "witches shoes" when working on old houses in England.
02:43 April 17, 2010 by lilsmokie
i remodeled my kitchen in my previous house about 20 years ago. while the kitchen was still dismantled, including walls, i came down one night about 2 in the morning and for some reason went straight to an open wall and found a40 year old liquor bottle . when i did seal the wall back up, i put in a empty jack daniels bottle next to it. i live in u.s. but was born in germany. apparently one of the homes builders left it there
Today's headlines
Green party wants only e-cars on Autobahn by 2030
Photo: DPA.

The environmentalist Green party has an ambitious plan for German cars to be petrol- and diesel-free within the next 15 years.

Commerzbank to make one in five staff redundant by 2020
Photo: DPA

Germany's second largest lender Commerzbank said on Thursday it plans to cut 9,600 jobs by 2020 and withhold dividends to pay for a €1.1 billion restructuring.

Germany's favourite smoker wins battle against eviction
Photo: DPA

How a pensioner with a serious smoking habit won a years-long fight for his right to keep his home - and his favourite pastime.

Thousands evacuated after WWII bomb found in Cologne
File photo of a Second World War bomb: DPA

Several thousands people were being evacuated from a district of Cologne just north of the old town on Thursday morning, after a Second World War bomb was found in a parking lot.

Kidnapped German journalist and her baby freed in Syria
File photo of a Syrian soldier: SANA/DPA.

A German woman who was kidnapped in Syria last year while she was pregnant has been freed along with her baby, the German Foreign Office said on Wednesday.

Air Berlin to cut 1,200 jobs and halve airline fleet
Photo: DPA.

Struggling Air Berlin, Germany's second-largest airline, announced on Wednesday a major restructuring plan that shrinks its fleet and cuts 1,200 jobs.

Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
Photo: Thomas Wolf/Wikimedia Commons.

From stunning chalk-white cliffs to fairy tale castles, Germany has some breathtaking sights to see, perfect for social media.

Train evacuated as passenger flips out during ticket check
Police at the scene in Leipzig. Photo: DPA

A regional train was evacuated in Leipzig on Wednesday after a passenger became aggressive during a ticket inspection.

Man arrested in Wuppertal as part of Spanish Isis raids
Police detain the suspect in Wuppertal. Photo: DPA

Police have arrested five suspected members of an Isis cell in Spain, Belgium and Germany that spread propaganda for the group online, the Spanish interior ministry said Wednesday.

Germans cut home energy usage by six percent in a year
Hamburg at night. Photo: DPA

The Energiewende is the German government's ambitious policy of drastically reducing carbon emissions. New figures show one remarkable success.

Sponsored Article
The Inner Circle: the secret to dating in Berlin
Lifestyle
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
Lifestyle
10 German films you have to watch before you die
Lifestyle
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
Lifestyle
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Sponsored Article
Retiring abroad: ensuring your health is covered
National
Seven great reasons to stay in Germany this September
National
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
National
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
National
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
Culture
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Rhineland
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Sponsored Article
The Inner Circle: the secret to dating in Berlin
Culture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
Lifestyle
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
Gallery
Germany's 17 Olympic gold medals in pictures
14 facts you never knew about the Brandenburg Gate
Society
Ten times Germans proved they really, really love beer
National
Six things you need to know when moving to Germany
Travel
These 10 little-known German towns are a must see
International
German scientists prove birds can sleep while flying
Technology
London v. Berlin: Which is better for startups?
Lifestyle
13 mortifying mistakes German learners always make
Travel
Enter if you dare: Berlin's best abandoned haunts
Lifestyle
10 rookie errors all Brits make when they arrive in Germany
6,545
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd