| Share
 

Cocked Hat

(A). A hat with the brim turned, like that of a bishop, dean, etc. It is also applied to the chapeau bras, and the military full-dress hat, pointed before and behind, and rising to a point at the crown, the chapeaù à cornu. “Cock” in this phrase means to turn; cocked, turned up.

Knocked into a cocked hat.
In the game of nine-pins, three pins were set up in the form of a triangle, and when all the pins except these three were knocked down, the set was technically said to be “knocked into a cocked hat.” Hence, utterly out of all shape or plumb. A somewhat similar phrase is “Knocked into the middle of next week.”

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

More on Cocked Hat from Infoplease:

Related Content

24 X 7

Private Tutor

Click Here for Details
24 x 7 Tutor Availability
Unlimited Online Tutoring
1-on-1 Tutoring