Heron Island, Great Barrier Reef, Australia
Thursday, 2 August 2012
Where did you get that hat?
The newspapers have given most attention to Nelson (who, being not without a certain vanity, might have appreciated the new look his old hatmaking company have given to his statue), but he is far from alone. Havelock and Napier have been given some sort of fashion statement - and today, some supporters of the Dutch Olympic team unwittingly got in on the act.
Hyde Park Corner and outside the Bank of England, likewise Shakespeare. Sadly, the Bard's baseball cap barely lasted a few hours in Leicester Square, but in a quiet corner of the City, his hat proclaims him a "constant sun".
Burns and Brunel did to deserve a lopsided flower fascinator each, I don't know - nor why the great Whig Charles James Fox has a wedding hat or a Duke of Bedford a lurid orange sombrero complete with artificial pigeon.
Beau Brummell's peacockery might not have been out of place in his own day; and both Sir Arthur Sullivan's Mikado hat and Captain John Smith's flamboyant feathers make a certain sense, too. Queen Victoria, however, remains unamused, as well she might.