Fare le scarpe, to Shoe someone, an Italian Expression


A very Italian curious expression, but what does it mean? What do shoes have to do with anything? Where does the expression come from? Italian Traditions will tell you all about it! We're talking about an expression that is linked with a working environment that means to cheat, to fool someone. More precisely, the phrase means to  More specifically, the term means harm someone, to be devious, referring to misdeeds - unbeknownst to the victim, of course, and at the same time pretending to be his friend - in order to take his place. This is where the shoes come in. When taking the other person's place they get in their shoes, hence they take their position. The origin of this expression is not entirely clear.

It seems that the expression is said to originate in 1863; GL Beccaria, in its "old and new Italian" dates back to the military jargon from the barracks, but according to other studies, and in particular those of SVIMEZ on the Italian economic unification, it seems that the saying means to remove someone physically or metaphorically,and has its origin in the Italian South. In particular, in the seventeenth-century from the custom of making the dead wear specially prepared new shoes of a certain rank, for their last journey. In this sense, therefore, to want to provoke the death of an enemy also meant to give him some new shoes. The expression to "shoe someone " could have been born from this context.

There's a popular tale that goes like this:"Two clever workers tricking emeritus boasted of being one more cunning than the other! The first said: "I can steal the eggs from the nest, while the bird broods, without the bird noticing!" He took a ladder and reached the nests on top of the tree by subtracting the bird's eggs without letting it fly! "See?" He said, reaching the ground. "That's the eggs, still warm!" And the other scoundrel, replied: "Check your shoes now!" Said his friend. His shoes were missing their soles, which his friend had deviously taken away when it was on the ladder! "

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