Definition of trilby in English:



  • A soft felt hat with a narrow brim and indented crown.

    • ‘Very few of them, no matter how poor, are bareheaded: the men wear flat caps, bowlers, straw boaters, trilbies, toppers, the women shawls or floral hats.’
    • ‘Andrew enjoyed golf and will be remembered for his debonair appearance, particularly the rakish angle of his trilby hat and his cream calfskin gloves.’
    • ‘The man on the doorstep had a camera dangling round his neck and was wearing a soft trilby hat - the kind that George Raft used to wear.’
    • ‘His father was dressed in a rubber macintosh, with thick domestic gloves, spats, and a trilby hat.’
    • ‘The felt trilby and cord shopper creates a mix and match look for head to toe style.’
    • ‘Stockport Hat Museum provided a trilby and he made eight trips to a vintage clothes shop in Haworth, west Yorkshire, to obtain his 1940s suit, overcoat, and gloves.’
    • ‘They wear trousers, even trilbies, shirts and ties, and they're not the butch ones.’
    • ‘Tweed jackets are popular with the men, along with garish ties and socks, coloured shirts with white collars, coats with velvet lapels, yellow cords - all topped off with a flat cap or a trilby.’
    • ‘He was renowned for wearing a battered trilby and long overcoat, and carrying a suitcase containing painting equipment, a bottle of Guinness and cold sausages.’
    • ‘He then set up the flip chart in the corner of the room, and took a tweed trilby from the hat stand and arranged it jauntily on his head.’


Late 19th century: from the name of the heroine in G. du Maurier's novel Trilby (1894), in the stage version of which such a hat was worn.