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  #1  
Old 11-25-2010, 05:45 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is offline
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What's the origin of the Santa hat?

Not necessarily the red tuque with the pom on top, but the basic pattern.
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  #2  
Old 11-25-2010, 06:31 PM
Superfluous Parentheses Superfluous Parentheses is offline
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Well, the history points to Saint Nicholas, which explains some of the color scheme (red and silver bishop's attire).
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Old 11-25-2010, 06:43 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is offline
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I was wondering about the basic pattern; the style. Or did only bishops wear floppy hats? (IANA Catholic.)



.

Last edited by Johnny L.A.; 11-25-2010 at 06:43 PM..
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Old 11-25-2010, 07:11 PM
Superfluous Parentheses Superfluous Parentheses is offline
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Bishops don't wear floppy hats. They wear miters. Like the pope does occasionally.

ETA: To clarify where I'm coming from St. Nicholas is the dominant December-present-distributing vaguely christian figure over here in the Netherlands, and the Christian/Catholic/Pagan influences are a bit more clear over here.

Last edited by Superfluous Parentheses; 11-25-2010 at 07:14 PM..
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  #5  
Old 11-25-2010, 07:36 PM
Fear Itself Fear Itself is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superfluous Parentheses View Post
Bishops don't wear floppy hats. They wear miters.
In the third century AD?
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  #6  
Old 11-25-2010, 07:44 PM
Fear Itself Fear Itself is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superfluous Parentheses View Post
Well, the history points to Saint Nicholas, which explains some of the color scheme (red and silver bishop's attire).
I love this part:
Quote:
As St. Nicholas is a very popular Orthodox saint, [Demre, the Turkish hometown of St Nicholas] attracts many Russian tourists. A solemn bronze statue of the Saint by the Russian sculptor Gregory Pototsky, donated by the Russian government in 2000, was given a prominent place on the square in front of the medieval church of St. Nicholas. In 2005, mayor Suleyman Topcu had the statue replaced by a red-suited plastic Santa Claus statue, because he wanted the central statue to be more recognizable to visitors from all over the world. Protests from the Russian government against this action were successful only to the extent that the Russian statue was returned, without its original high pedestal, to a corner near the church.
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Old 11-25-2010, 09:41 PM
sqweels sqweels is offline
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This probably isn't the origin, but during Saturnalia in Roman times, everyone wore a floppy red cap.
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Old 11-25-2010, 09:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superfluous Parentheses View Post
Well, the history points to Saint Nicholas, which explains some of the color scheme (red and silver bishop's attire).
I resurrected three murdered children but do they call me Nikolaos the Miracleworker?

No! Throw one lousy gold bag....
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  #9  
Old 11-26-2010, 04:40 AM
footballisplayedwithyourfeet footballisplayedwithyourfeet is offline
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Didn't Coca Cola invent it?
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  #10  
Old 11-26-2010, 04:49 AM
GuanoLad GuanoLad is offline
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I would guess the modern version of Santa's hat is based on mediaeval (and much older) caps, much like gnome hats. I expect they were very simple to make, and served their purpose well enough.
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  #11  
Old 11-26-2010, 08:15 AM
Leaffan Leaffan is offline
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I think the question is, why do people wear hats that have a long sleeve on them, with a ball at the end.

Why not just wear a form-fitting toque?
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  #12  
Old 11-26-2010, 09:08 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leaffan View Post
I think the question is, why do people wear hats that have a long sleeve on them, with a ball at the end.

Why not just wear a form-fitting toque?
Actually, the question is:

There is a style of hat that in the U.S. is normally associated with Santa Claus. This style of hat is made of soft, not knit, material and is conical in shape. It is either fur-lined, and the bottom normally worn turned up; or it has decorative fur around the base to simulate the effect of turning out a fur lining.

I assume that this conical hat was not invented, or designed specifically for, the character known as Santa Claus, Father Christmas, and other aliases. Rather, I assume that the hat was an existing design that had existed for perhaps hundreds of years before the Christmas icon was created, and that the Jolly Old Elf was dressed in an existing style. (Come to think of it, elves tend to be depicted wearing the same style of hat.)

Where did this particular type of hat originate? In what society, and in what part of the world was this a common style of headwear? For example, the ushanka is associated with Russia and Scandinavia. The Tam o'Shanter is associated with the Scots. So what group of people were associated with the hat that is the same style as the one typically shown being worn by Santa Claus?
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  #13  
Old 11-26-2010, 09:41 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is offline
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Interesting article about the Phrygian cap. It's very similar to the 'Santa hat'. I associate the conical hat that is the subject of the question with Scandinavia and Germany because of the fur lining; not with ancient Asia. The Liberty cap, which derived from the Phrygian cap, looks more similar. I wonder though, if the Phrygian cap and its derivatives and the fur-lined hat in the OP are related, or if they are products of independent development.
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  #14  
Old 11-26-2010, 10:23 AM
Fear Itself Fear Itself is online now
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I always thought Santa's hat was based on a night cap (or sleeping cap) which floppier than a Phrygian cap. After all Santa, visits houses at night, and that red velvet getup looks a lot like pajamas.
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  #15  
Old 11-26-2010, 10:42 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is offline
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I considered that. Only, I'm sure I've seen conical fur-lined hats depicted somewhere. Such a hat would be of more utility outdoors.
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  #16  
Old 11-26-2010, 10:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
I considered that. Only, I'm sure I've seen conical fur-lined hats depicted somewhere. Such a hat would be of more utility outdoors.
Santa's hat is certainly fur trimmed, but, having never seen the inside, I don't know if it is fur lined.
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  #17  
Old 11-26-2010, 10:48 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fear Itself View Post
Santa's hat is certainly fur trimmed, but, having never seen the inside, I don't know if it is fur lined.
Yes (referring to the hat type, and not Santa's hat specifically):
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny L.A.
It is either fur-lined, and the bottom normally worn turned up; or it has decorative fur around the base to simulate the effect of turning out a fur lining.



.

Last edited by Johnny L.A.; 11-26-2010 at 10:49 AM..
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  #18  
Old 11-26-2010, 10:55 AM
Fear Itself Fear Itself is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
Yes (referring to the hat type, and not Santa's hat specifically):
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny L.A.
It is either fur-lined, and the bottom normally worn turned up; or it has decorative fur around the base to simulate the effect of turning out a fur lining.
Your post is your cite?
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  #19  
Old 11-26-2010, 11:14 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is offline
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If there is fur showing on the outside, it's either fur-lined with the bottom turned up or it is not fur-lined and the fur is decorative.
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Old 11-26-2010, 11:42 AM
Larry Mudd Larry Mudd is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by footballisplayedwithyourfeet View Post
Didn't Coca Cola invent it?
Nope.
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  #21  
Old 11-26-2010, 11:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
If there is fur showing on the outside, it's either fur-lined with the bottom turned up or it is not fur-lined and the fur is decorative.
Decorative fur is not simply to simulate a fur lining. Wolverine fur is used to trim parka hoods because ice won't build up on it, yet the hood is not lined with fur.
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  #22  
Old 11-26-2010, 11:59 AM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is offline
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I'm just asking where this style of hat was prevalent.
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Old 11-26-2010, 12:09 PM
Gagundathar Gagundathar is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
I'm just asking where this style of hat was prevalent.
Quite obviously at the North Pole.
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  #24  
Old 11-26-2010, 12:22 PM
Slithy Tove Slithy Tove is offline
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In this discussion, it's asserted it was Germany

Last edited by Slithy Tove; 11-26-2010 at 12:23 PM..
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  #25  
Old 11-26-2010, 12:23 PM
Anaglyph Anaglyph is offline
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In Europe, Santa Claus traditionally wears a bishops habit and miter (Sinter Klaas, Holland) or a monks habit with a hood (Samichlaus, Switzerland) and is accompanied by a helper in a plain brown habit with hood (Schmutzli) and a donkey. The red pants, jacket and floppy hat is the American variation of the theme (Santa Claus, USA)
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  #26  
Old 11-26-2010, 12:26 PM
Fear Itself Fear Itself is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anaglyph View Post
In Europe, Santa Claus traditionally wears a bishops habit and miter (Sinter Klaas, Holland) or a monks habit with a hood (Samichlaus, Switzerland) and is accompanied by a helper in a plain brown habit with hood (Schmutzli) and a donkey. The red pants, jacket and floppy hat is the American variation of the theme (Santa Claus, USA)
That's one scary-ass Santa Claus!
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  #27  
Old 11-26-2010, 12:39 PM
Johnny L.A. Johnny L.A. is offline
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I have to apologise to everyone. I seem to be unable to make myself clear lately.

I'm not interested in the origin of Santa Claus, nor of the origin of his modern depiction. I only mentioned him because he wears a style of hat that is closely associated with him. When I asked the question I thought that my implication was that I was asking about the origin of a certain style of headwear, and that my allusion to Santa Claus was merely a way of describing the style of cap without having to go into detail (which I did later anyway). Clearly I failed.

I appreciate the link to the Phrygian cap, which seems similar. The suggestion that the specific style of cap originated in Germany sounds plausible. But until I can figure out a way to ask my question that does not produce answers that involve Santa Claus or Christmas, it sounds as if the question is unanswerable.
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  #28  
Old 11-26-2010, 12:42 PM
Fear Itself Fear Itself is online now
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Bah, humbug.
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  #29  
Old 11-26-2010, 01:48 PM
Spectre of Pithecanthropus Spectre of Pithecanthropus is offline
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Caps, hoods and cowls, often with long pointy ends hanging down in the back were fairly standard in late medieval Northern Europe. There was a somewhat well known find of clothing including such garments in Greenland, supposedly dated to the early 16th Century and thus evidence of surviving Norse communities. If I can find a picture somewhere I'll come back with a link.
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  #30  
Old 11-26-2010, 07:30 PM
handsomeharry handsomeharry is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
I have to apologise to everyone. I seem to be unable to make myself clear lately.

I'm not interested in the origin of Santa Claus, nor of the origin of his modern depiction. I only mentioned him because he wears a style of hat that is closely associated with him. When I asked the question I thought that my implication was that I was asking about the origin of a certain style of headwear, and that my allusion to Santa Claus was merely a way of describing the style of cap without having to go into detail (which I did later anyway). Clearly I failed.

I appreciate the link to the Phrygian cap, which seems similar. The suggestion that the specific style of cap originated in Germany sounds plausible. But until I can figure out a way to ask my question that does not produce answers that involve Santa Claus or Christmas, it sounds as if the question is unanswerable.
I think it's from a Thomas Nast drawing from the 1800s.

Merry Christmas!

hh
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  #31  
Old 11-26-2010, 07:31 PM
handsomeharry handsomeharry is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny L.A. View Post
I have to apologise to everyone. I seem to be unable to make myself clear lately.

I'm not interested in the origin of Santa Claus, nor of the origin of his modern depiction. I only mentioned him because he wears a style of hat that is closely associated with him. When I asked the question I thought that my implication was that I was asking about the origin of a certain style of headwear, and that my allusion to Santa Claus was merely a way of describing the style of cap without having to go into detail (which I did later anyway). Clearly I failed.

I appreciate the link to the Phrygian cap, which seems similar. The suggestion that the specific style of cap originated in Germany sounds plausible. But until I can figure out a way to ask my question that does not produce answers that involve Santa Claus or Christmas, it sounds as if the question is unanswerable.
I think it's from a Thomas Nast drawing from the 1800s.

Merry Christmas!

hh
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  #32  
Old 11-26-2010, 08:08 PM
WarmNPrickly WarmNPrickly is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fear Itself View Post
Well then imagine him withsix to eight black men. If your bad, they'll stuff you in a bag, kick you and whip you with a switch.
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  #33  
Old 11-28-2010, 02:58 AM
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It sounded to me more like you were asking about the hat, and why Santa wore it. Because, obviously, such a simple design is likely to have been created multiple times in various cultures. Unless it was specifically historically linked to Santa, we could just say the origin was some caveman who sewed a conical hat.
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