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Re: High hats and high-hatting

Posted by R. Berg on June 18, 2001

In Reply to: Re: Giving someone the high hat posted by ESC on June 17, 2001

: : : Not long ago, friends and I watched a video movie set in the 1920s or '30s. One of the characters repeatedly, at different points in the story, used the phrase "now you're giving me the high hat." Not being familiar with the expression, I took from it that the guy felt snubbed. Anyone have some light on this? Thanks. - Patty

: : high-hat
: :
: : VERB: Informal. To treat in a superciliously indulgent manner: condescend, patronize. Idioms: speak (or talk) down to. See ATTITUDE, OVER, RESPECT, RISE.
: : ADJECTIVE: Informal. Characteristic of or resembling a snob: elitist, snobbish, snobby. Informal : snooty, stuck-up, uppish, uppity.

: And I am guessing that "high-hat" refers to the top hat worn mostly by the rich.

Yup. American Heritage Dict. on "high-hat" as a noun: "Slang. One thought likely to wear a high hat; a snob." As a verb: "To be condescending or supercilious toward." But there's no entry for "high hat" as a style of hat.