For hundreds of years, the glass slipper has been synonymous with the tale of Cinderella and her midnight dash home from the ball. Now an academic has traced its 17th-century origins and uncovered a connection to the creation of the Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles and the impractical fashions and fads of French aristocrats.
“The glass slipper is a witty joke,” said Genevieve Warwick, professor of the history of art at the University of Edinburgh. It was intended to be a “literary mascot of French economic modernity” and a tongue-in-cheek reference to Louis XIV’s love of extravagant and often quixotic French fashion, especially in regard to shoes, she told the Observer. “No one could actually walk, let alone dance, in shoes made of glass.”
For years that other explanation has been that there’s some witty pun between the French for glass slipper and the French for lady’s bits. So, the Prince finds lady’s bits that fit, loses them then searches to find them again. Finds, marries and happy ever after.
This other explanation might have even less truth to it than this new one but there we are, preference for a story is preference.