The Oxford is derived from a half boot popular in Oxford (Oxon.) around 1800. In its simplicity it is one of the most stylish and elegant shoes one can find. Originally this styles comes from Ireland and Scotland, where they were Balmorals after Balmoral Castle; this term is often heard in North America. The Oxford is always closed laced.
A closed laced Oxford shoe is shown above. An open laced Derby shoe is shown above
In a closed laced shoe the vamp is sewn on top of the quarters. In an open laced shoe the quarters are sewn on top of the vamp.