I'll eat my hat

I'll eat my hat

An expression describing the hypothetical act of penance that one promises to take if they are wrong about something. I'll eat my hat if the repairs end up costing less than $1,000. If you can prove me wrong, I'll eat my hat.
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I'll eat my hat.

Fig. I will be very surprised. (Used to express strong disbelief in something.) If Joe really joins the Army, I'll eat my hat. If this car gives you any trouble, I'll eat my hat.
See also: eat, hat

eat one's hat

Declare one's certainty that something will not happen or is untrue. This hyperbolic expression almost always follows an if-clause, as in If he's on time, I'll eat my hat, that is, "I'll consume my headgear if I'm wrong." Charles Dickens used it in Pickwick Papers (1837): "If I knew as little of life as that, I'd eat my hat and swallow the buckle whole." [First half of 1800s]
See also: eat, hat

I'll eat my hat

used to indicate that you think a particular thing is extremely unlikely to happen.
See also: eat, hat
References in periodicals archive ?
If he doesn't win, I'll eat my hat in Stockton town centre," said Scott, who got through to boot camp before being knocked out for fluffing his lines before the judges.
If that lad doesn't go to England then I'll eat my hat.
If it doesn't win most spectacular scene at next year's Soap Awards I'll eat my hat.
It's Scotland's turn in 2014 and if we cannot improve on India's offering then I'll eat my hat or, worse, watch a rerun of Scotland against the Czech Republic.
I can't remember if it was "Halo" or "Diva" Christopher Owens talked about incessantly--I get four letter, one-word title Beyonce songs confused--but, using context clues, I'll eat my hat if it wasn't "Halo.
If Burgham Park is a deprived area I'll eat my hat.
If Celtic win the league next season, I'll eat my hat.
Another bit of fantastic news is Adam Reach signing a four-year deal - although I'll eat my hat if he sees it out.
To be perfectly honest, I'll eat my hat if he gets beaten today - he might be short odds but he'll win.
If Parliament's new measures succeed I'll eat my hat, Their policies aren't working and that is simply that.
And Lib Dem Paddy Ashdown - whose party was predicted to get just 10 seats - said: "If it's right, I'll eat my hat.
Manchester United aren't near the top four at the moment tenth but if the season finishes like that I'll eat my hat.
It's not something I would do and if this woman was disabled then I'll eat my hat.