One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A loose informal Japanese coat.
- ‘U.S. Ambassador Thomas Foley leaped up onto a stage, wearing a light blue happi coat, and read out to Saeki-san, in front of the throng, a letter of congratulations from the White House.’
- ‘In the welcoming ceremony, Japanese boys wore happi coats, Japan's traditional workman's short coat, and beat ‘wadaiko’ drums while girls clad in kimono performed dances and played 13-stringed horizontal ‘koto’ harps.’
- ‘We dismissed happi coats and those dreadful black velveteen jackets with a dragon and ‘I love Japan’ emblazoned on the back as passé. Platform geta won't fly, my young wife says.’
- ‘His black happi is wrapped around his bulky frame like a dressing gown.’
- ‘Kids dressed in happi coats and kimonos are irresistible, as is the smell of chicken teriyaki on the grill.’
Late 19th century: Japanese.
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