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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Charmion BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance (324* d) RE: BS: How can we restore a reason renaissance 11 Jan 21

Robo, portyanki are not like puttees, except in that they are flat pieces of cloth.

Oblong in shape, portyanki are wrapped around the bare feet and ankles, and are worn inside the soldier's boots and trousers. They work best with the felt-lined knee-high boots that are the Russian equivalent of mukluks. Puttees are long strips of cotton webbing that are wound around the leg on top of the trousers, socks and the top two inches of the British ammo boot. Infantry soldiers wind them from the ankle up to the knee, and gunners and troopers wind from the knee down to the ankle, so they don't come undone from friction against stirrup leathers.

After the invention of knitting machines and the arrival on the Russian market of affordable knitted socks, the true purpose of portyanki -- apart from saving the state money -- was as an initiation experience for recruits. Learning to wrap their feet correctly was one of the first things taught to Soviet soldiers, and the Russian army abandoned them only very recently. Puttees were adapted from clothing worn by tribal fighters in India during the 18th and 19th centuries, and were kept in wear until the 1960s because they provided easily adjustable support to soldiers' legs, they were very distinctively military, and they were cheap.

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