German Army (Wehrmacht) "Knobelbecher" Boots - WWII
East German Army (NVA)
"Knobelbecher" Boots - Post WWII
German Airforce (Luftwaffe) Boots - Shearling Lined pre and post WWII
|The standard version of the Knobelbecher in World War II
had a leather sole with hobnails and horseshoe heel. There were many
variants during the war, especially when leather became scarce. Many
were made with rubber half soles instead of leather.
The East German version of the Knobelbechers were of very poor quality
and style. They remain widely available in surplus stores at very low
prices but experts say they are not worth having at any price.
The German Navy versions of these boots, called the "Seestiefel", are
distinguished by a pebble grained leather which is more supple than the Army
version which is very stiff.
There is also a variant which was used by border guards. On that version
the strap at the top is fastened using a snap behind the buckle.
Officers wore higher, finer versions of the boot which were like
riding boots. The watch battalion, a ceremonial guard, wore a slightly
dressier version of these with a leather sole, taps, and heel horseshoes.
Border guards, the Navy and some other organizations had variants of
these, including shearling lined versions for winter wear. The Lutfwaffe
(Air Force) had some versions with side zips and shearling lining.
The sizing on the Army/Bundeswehr version is done in the continental sizing
and the Navy version uses the NATO / Mondo Point sizing. So a US men's size 11
foot would need a size 45 Army boot and a size 290 Navy boot.
German Navy "Seestiefel" Boots -
post WWII to present
Guard Battalion (Wach Batallion) "Knobelbecher" Boots -
post WWII to present
|So what's a jackboot? A jackboot is any type of combat
boot that reaches mid-calf, has no laces, and typically has a leather sole with
hobnails and heel irons. Jackboots were worn by 17th century soldiers and afterwards
by fishermen, among others.
Although dating from before Napoleon, since the twentieth century
jackboots have been strongly associated with totalitarian regimes. The
word is commonly used in Britain as a synonym for totalitarianism,
particularly Fascism, although jackboots and similar types of footwear
have been worn by various British regiments since the 18th Century.
The boots are connected to Fascism, particularly Nazism, as they
were issued by the Wehrmacht and SS during early phases of World War II
before Germany encountered leather shortages. The same style of boot
had been in use with German armies in World War I and before.
Jackboots can also be associated with the former USSR and East
Germany. Jackboots are still a part of the modern parade and service
attire of the army of Russia.
So the answer is? "Jackboot" is a type of boot and the Knobelbecher
is one of the most famous (or infamous) type of this style of boot.