A hat is a type of covering for the head, and there are many types of hats.
Hats are different in different parts of the world. Some hats are worn by women, other hats by men, others by both; infants and children may also wear hats, and some hats are not worn by anyone at all. These hats are just used for decoration. People who make hats for men are called hatters, and those who make hats for women are called milliners. The kinds of hats (or caps, which are like hats) worn by different groups within various societies in different countries are very numerous.
Some types of hats or caps are worn as a sign of highly specialised social roles. For example, bishops can wear mitres and some lawyers wear wigs. In some societies, hats are of great political significance, such as the white hat of English Radicals, the Cap of Liberty of the Jacobins of France; and the two political parties in Sweden, the Hats (noblemen) and Caps (common people).
Some examples of hats:
- baseball cap, for baseball players and many others
- beret, for fishermen or peasants in parts of western Europe
- bowler hat, for men practising some traditionally middle class occupations
- coonskin cap, for some hunters or trappers
- fedora, a felt hat of a particular shape
- fez, similar to a tarboush, found in many Islamic countries
- helmet, either for those serving in the armed forces or for sportsman (e.g. motorcyclists)
- mitre, for formal use by bishops
- riding helmet, a helmet for horse riders
This is a short list of some common and iconic examples of hats.
|Ascot cap||A hard men's cap, similar to the flat cap, but distinguished by its hardness and rounded shape.|
|Balmoral bonnet||Traditional Scottish bonnet or cap worn with Scottish Highland dress.|
|Baseball cap||A type of soft, light cotton cap with a rounded crown and a stiff, frontward-projecting bill.|
|Beanie||A brimless cap, with or without a small visor, once popular among school boys. Sometimes includes a propeller.
Note: In New Zealand, Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom, "beanie" also or otherwise refers to the tuque.
|Bearskin||The tall, furry hat of the Brigade of Guards' full-dress uniform, originally designed to protect them against sword-cuts, etc. Commonly seen at Buckingham Palace in London, England. Sometimes mistakenly identified as a busby.|
|Beret||A soft round cap, usually of woollen felt, with a bulging flat crown and tight-fitting brimless headband. Worn by both men and women and traditionally associated with Basque people, France, and the military. Often part of [European?] schoolgirls' uniform during the 1920s, '30s and '40s.|
|Bicorne||A broad-brimmed felt hat with brim folded up and pinned front and back to create a long-horned shape. Also known as a cocked hat. Worn by European military officers in the 1790s and, as illustrated, commonly associated with Napoleon.|
|Bowler / Derby||A hard felt hat with a rounded crown created in 1850 by Lock's of St James's, the hatters to Thomas Coke, 2nd Earl of Leicester, for his servants. More commonly known as a Derby in the United States.|
|Chullo||Peruvian or Bolivian hat with ear-flaps made from vicuña, alpaca, llama or sheep's wool.|
|Cloche hat||A bell-shaped ladies' hat that was popular during the Roaring Twenties.|
|Cricket cap||A type of soft cap traditionally worn by cricket players.|
|Sombrero Cordobés||A traditional flat-brimmed and flat-topped hat originating from Córdoba, Spain, associated with flamenco dancing and music and popularized by characters such as Zorro.|
|Conical Asian hat||A conical straw hat associated with East and Southeast Asia. Sometimes known as a "coolie hat", although the term "coolie" may be interpreted as derogatory.|
|Coonskin cap||A hat, fashioned from the skin and fur of a raccoon, that became associated with Canadian and American frontiersmen of the 18th and 19th centuries.|
|Custodian helmet||A helmet traditionally worn by British police constables while on foot patrol.|
|Deerstalker||A warm, close-fitting tweed cap, with brims front and behind and ear-flaps that can be tied together either over the crown or under the chin. Originally designed for use while hunting in the climate of Scotland. Worn by –and so closely associated with – the character Sherlock Holmes.|
|Fedora||A soft felt hat with a medium brim and lengthwise crease in the crown.|
|Fez||Red felt hat in the shape of a truncated cone, common to Arab-speaking countries.|
|Fulani hat||A conical plant fiber hat covered in leather both at the brim and top, worn by men of the Fulani people in West Africa.|
|Keffiyah||Three piece ensemble consisting of a Thagiyah skull cap, Gutrah scarf, and Ogal black band. Gutrahs are plain white or checkered, denoting ethnic or national identities..|
|Hard hat||A rounded rigid helmet with a small brim predominantly used in workplace environments, such as construction sites, to protect the head from injury by falling objects, debris and bad weather.|
|Kippah||A hemispherical cap worn by Jews to fulfill the customary requirement held by halachic authorities that the head be covered at all times.|
|Kufi||A brimless, short, rounded cap worn by Africans and people throughout the African diaspora.|
|Mitre||Distinctive hat worn by bishops in the Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox Church, and the Anglican Communion.|
|Montera||A crocheted hat worn by bullfighters.|
|Panama||Straw hat made in Ecuador.|
|Phrygian Cap||A soft conical cap pulled forward. In sculpture, paintings and caricatures it represents freedom and the pursuit of liberty. The popular cartoon characters The Smurfs wear white Phrygian caps.|
|Pillbox hat||A small hat with straight, upright sides, a flat crown, and no brim.|
|Pith Helmet||A lightweight rigid cloth-covered helmet made of cork or pith, with brims front and back. Worn by Europeans in tropical colonies in the 1800s.|
|Rastacap||A tall, round, usually crocheted and brightly colored, cap worn by Rastafarians and others with dreadlocks to tuck their locks away.|
|Santa Hat||A floppy pointed red hat trimmed in white fur traditionally associated with Christmas.|
|Sombrero||A Mexican hat with a conical crown and a very wide, saucer-shaped brim, highly embroidered made of plush felt.|
|Top hat||Also known as a beaver hat, a magician's hat, or, in the case of the tallest examples, a stovepipe hat. A tall, flat-crowned, cylindrical hat worn by men in the 19th and early 20th centuries, now worn only with morning dress or evening dress. Cartoon characters Uncle Sam and Mr. Monopoly are often depicted wearing such hats. Once made from felted beaver fur.|
|Toque||(informally, "chef's hat") A tall, pleated, brimless, cylindrical hat traditionally worn by chefs.|
|Tricorne||A soft hat with a low crown and broad brim, pinned up on either side of the head and at the back, producing a triangular shape. Worn by Europeans in the 18th century. Larger, taller, and heavily ornamented brims were present in France and the Papal States.|
|Tuque||In Canada, a knitted hat, worn in winter, usually made from wool or acrylic. Also known as a ski cap, knit hat, knit cap, sock cap, stocking cap, toboggan, watch cap, or goobalini. In New Zealand, Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom, the term "beanie" is applied to this cap.|
|Turban||A headdress consisting of a scarf-like single piece of cloth wound around either the head itself or an inner hat.|
|Ushanka||A Russian fur hat with fold-down ear-flaps.|
|Zucchetto||Skullcap worn by clerics typically in Roman Catholicism.|
Hat sizes are determined by measuring the circumference of a person's head about 1 centimetre (1⁄2 in) above the ears. Inches or centimeters may be used depending on the manufacturer. Felt hats can be stretched for a custom fit. Some hats, like hard hats and baseball caps, are adjustable. Cheaper hats come in "standard sizes", such as small, medium, large, extra large: the mapping of measured size to the various "standard sizes" varies from maker to maker and style to style, as can be seen by studying various catalogues, such as Hammacher Schlemmer.
Traditional hat size is worked out by adding the fore and aft and side to side measurements (in inches) then dividing by two. In the UK, an equivalent hat size is an eighth of an inch smaller than in the US.
Hat Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.