Eat My Hat: Meaning and Origin

People say “I’ll eat my hat” when they are sure something will not happen.
Eat my hatNo-one would want to literally eat their hat so this expression is only used when someone is very sure about something. One of the earliest appearances of this phrase was in Charles Dickens’ ‘The Pickwick Papers’ in 1837: “If I knew as little of life as that, I’d eat my hat and swallow the buckle whole”.

There are many things that would be very difficult to eat so it is not known why a hat was chosen. However, some people think that it is because the king and his companions used to wear large and elaborate hats that would have been especially difficult to eat!
“He’s always late. If he gets here on time, I’ll eat my hat!”

“My friends said they’ll eat their hats if I pass my driving test!”

I’ll eat my hat if you can eat 20 burgers in one hour!”

“My mum said she would eat her hat if I didn’t pass the exam but I got top marks! I’m going to put her hat in the oven when I get home!”

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