- a shaped covering for the head, usually with a crown and brim, especially for wear outdoors.
- Roman Catholic Church.
- the distinctive head covering of a cardinal.
- the office or dignity of a cardinal.Compare red hat.
verb (used with object), hat·ted, hat·ting.
- to provide with a hat; put a hat on.
- hat in hand, humbly; respectfully: He approached the boss, hat in hand.
- pass the hat, to ask for contributions of money, as for charity; take up a collection: The lodge members passed the hat to send underprivileged children to summer camp.
- take off one’s hat to, to express high regard for; praise: We took off our hats to their courage and daring.
- talk through one’s hat, to speak without knowing the facts; make unsupported or incorrect statements: He is talking through his hat when he says he’ll make the team.
- throw/toss one’s hat in/into the ring, to become a participant in a contest, especially to declare one’s candidacy for political office: His friends are urging him to throw his hat in the ring.
- under one’s hat, confidential; private; secret: I’ll tell you the real story, but keep it under your hat.
- wear two/several hats, to function in more than one capacity; fill two or more positions: He wears two hats, serving as the company’s comptroller as well as its chief executive officer.
- any of various head coverings, esp one with a brim and a shaped crown
- (in combination)hatrack
- informal a role or capacity
- at the drop of a hat without hesitation or delay
- I’ll eat my hat informal I will be greatly surprised if (something that proves me wrong) happensI’ll eat my hat if this book comes out late
- hat in hand humbly or servilely
- keep something under one’s hat to keep something secret
- my hat (interjection) British informal
- my word! my goodness!
- old hat something stale or old-fashioned
- out of a hat
- as if by magic
- at random
- pass the hat round or send the hat round to collect money, as for a cause
- take off one’s hat to to admire or congratulate
- talk through one’s hat
- to talk foolishly
- to deceive or bluff
- throw one’s hat at it Irish to give up all hope of getting or achieving somethingyou can throw your hat at it now
- throw one’s hat in the ring or toss one’s hat in the ring to announce one’s intentions to be a candidate or contestant
verb hats, hatting or hatted
- (tr) to supply (a person, etc) with a hat or put a hat on (someone)
n.Old English hæt “hat, head covering,” from Proto-Germanic *hattuz “hood, cowl” (cf. Frisian hat, Old Norse hattr), from PIE root *kadh- “cover, protect” (cf. Lithuanian kudas “tuft or crest of a bird,” Latin cassis “helmet”). Now, “head covering with a more or less horizontal brim.” To throw one’s hat in the ring was originally (1847) to take up a challenge in prize-fighting. To eat one’s hat is said to have been originally To eat Old Rowley’s [Charles II’s] hat. Ask for financial contributions, as in Let’s pass the hat so we can get her a nice going-away gift. This expression alludes to the actual practice of passing a hat around a gathering, but it is also used more figuratively, as in The board decided to pass the hat again among the corporate sponsors. [Late 1800s] In addition to the idioms beginning with hat
Also see undercap.