binding in China originated from the Five Dynasties Period
(907-960AD). According to one legend story, one emperor's concubine
name Yao Niang who danced gracefully on the lily flowers made of
gold with her feet bound. Other girls in the palace start to follow
her practice. The bound feet with 3 or 4 inches, were called “Gold
Lily”. This practice gradually spread through the upper class during
the Song Dynasty (960-1279AD). During the Ming period (1368-1644)
and the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911AD) the custom of foot binding permeate
in majority of the Chinese population. It was even very difficult
for girls to marry without binding feet. It was finally abolished
in the 1911 Revolution of Sun Yat-Sen. The practice of foot binding
lasted for approximately one millennium. During this time, around
one billion women had their feet bound in China.
Pursuing beauty is the nature of human being. Corset of women was
popular in Europe in 18th century. Today tattoos and body piercing
become popular among young people. Breast implants, liposuction
and rhinoplasty are practiced by fashioned women. However, the foot
binding of ancient Chinese women was most detrimental and terrible.
The process of foot binding
A bandage, ten feet long and two inches wide was wrapped tightly
around the foot, forcing the four small toes under the sole of the
foot. This made the feet narrower but at the same time it made the
feet shorter because it also forced the big toe and the heel closer
together by bowing the arch of the foot. The bandage was tightened
each day and the girl's feet were put into progressively smaller
and smaller sized shoes. The entire process usually took about two
years at the end of which the feet were essentially dead and utterly
useless. The feet had to be washed and manicured on a daily basis.
If they weren't manicured properly the toe nails could cut into
the flesh that would result in infections.
The side effect of foot binding
The bindings were too tight they could cut off blood circulation
which could lead to gangrene and blood poisoning. The feet had to
be massaged and given hot and cold compresses to help relieve the
pain and help improve blood circulation. Sometimes, corns would
develop on the toes and would have to be cut off with a knife. With
the lack of blood circulation flesh would rot and fall off and sometimes
the toes would fester. Pain was said to have been excruciating especially
if this process was begun at a later age. The ideal foot would fit
into a shoe only three to four inches long. It is difficult to imagine
the suffering that these women had to endure.
When foot binding became the aesthetic norms of the society the
women changed into the men’s subservient object because the deformed
feet made women lose their freedom of moving.
The tottered women were restricted in home and the bound feet became
a symbol of chastity which was once formed, could not be unlocked
like a chastity belt. This strange and ugly custom went hand in
hand with the Neo-Confucian teachings of the time which preached
a hierarchical social order starting in the family with women being
subservient to their husbands. So we can say foot binding in China
was both physical and spiritual shackles for Chinese women. The
spiritual pain was much beyond what the body which suffered.
Chinese Women with Small Bound Feet
Chinese Girls Start to Bind Feet During Childhood
Deformed Sole and Toes after Feet Binding
Inches Golden Lily Shoes
Inches Golden lily shoes for sale
Each pair of shoes will cost 50USD including flat mail.
They are nice handicraft s for collections. A pair of shoes has
auspicious meaning in Chinese culture; it means the couple come
in and come out safely in pairs and they can live together until
Inches Golden Lily Shoes on Sale (shoe1)
Inches Golden Lily Shoes on Sale (shoe2)
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