:"Mad as a hatter" redirects here. For the Batman episode, see ."
A hatter is a maker or seller of
hats. Milliners are a category of hatters who design women's hats.
Mad as a hatter
The origin of the proverbial expression mad as a hatter is uncertain. It may derive from: ["Why Do We Say ...?",
Nigel Rees, 1987, ISBN 0-7137-1944-3]
* An incidence of
nominalizationof the verb hatter, which means "To harass; to weary; to wear out with fatigue." according to Samuel Johnson's " A Dictionary of the English Language" published in 1755. In the text he cites a passage from the work of John Drydenas an example of usage: "He's "hatter'd" out with pennance." [ Johnson, Samuel. " A Dictionary of the English Language": An Anthology. David Crystal, ed. (London: Penguin, 2005), 289 ISBN 0-141-44157-7]
Robert Crab, a 17th century eccentric who gave all his goods to the poor and lived on leaves and grass.
Mercury poisoningsuffered by hatters in the 18th century and 19th century, when mercury was used in the manufacture of felt. Absorption of mercury through the skin can cause Korsakoff's syndrome.
* An adaptation of the Anglo-Saxon word "atter" meaning poison, closely related to the word "adder" for the poisonous Crossed Viper. Lexicographers William and Mary Morris in "Morris Dictionary of Word and Phrase Origins" (1977) favour this derivation because "mad as a hatter" was known before hat making was a recognized trade.
Lewis Carrollused the phrase for the character of The Hatterin " Alice's Adventures in Wonderland". This character is also known as "The Mad Hatter". Although eccentric, the Mad Hatter does not exhibit symptoms of mercury poisoning. [cite journal |journal= Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) |date=1983 |volume=287 |issue=6409 |pages=1961 |title= Did the Mad Hatter have mercury poisoning? |author= Waldron HA |pmid=6418283 |url=http://pubmedcentral.nih.gov/pagerender.fcgi?artid=1550196&pageindex=1]
Stockport CountyFootball Club ( Stockport, Greater Manchester, England) are commonly known as "The Hatters" due to the hatting industry in the town, this nickname also being shared by Luton TownFootball Club. A meeting of the two sides often is billed as "The Hatters Derby".
* Students who attend
Hatboro-Horsham School Districtare known as Hatters. This refers to Hatboro's history of hat production.
Danbury, Connecticut's Danbury High School's mascot is the Hatter because Danbury was the hat center of the world from the 19th century to about the early 20th century. Danbury's professional hockey team is known as the Mad Hatters.
Batman's rogues gallery includes Jervis Tetch, a delusional man obsessed with hats. He named and stylized himself after "the Mad Hatter" from Carroll's stories due to his own insanity, a pronounced fixation on the Alice in Wonderland stories, and a lifelong fascination with hats of all shapes and forms. His crimes usually include mind control devices placed within some form of headwear.
Mad Hatter (comics)
Mad Hatter (Bank Robber)
* [http://www.snopes.com/language/phrases/hatter.htm "Mad as a Hatter" at Urban Legends]
* [http://www.quinion.com/words/qa/qa-mad2.htm Questions & Answers: Mad as a Hatter]
* [http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/mad-as-a-hatter.html "As mad as a hatter" at Phrasefinder]
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