One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A soft felt hat with a low crown and wide brim.
vigilant, alert, on the alert, wary, watchful, cautious, careful, heedful, chary, circumspect, on the lookout, on the qui vive, on one's toes, prepared, ready, wideawake, attentive, observant, keeping one's eyes peeledView synonyms
- ‘When a fedora, a bowler, a balmoral, a tam-o'-shanter, a Bombay Bowler, a pork-pie or a floppy-brimmed wideawake?’
- ‘He continued with a description of ‘the draught-fearing Bruch, who looked like an Arctic explorer, having armed himself with galoshes, a waterproof wideawake and a thick mackintosh to combat the rigours of an English June’.’
Mid 19th century: punningly so named, because the hat does not have a ‘nap’ or glossy surface.
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