Some people are only just beginning to realize that the pompom has a history spanning over a thousand years, stretching from the Napoleonic battlefields to the Norse gods
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People are only just beginning to realize why winter hats have pompoms and the long, over a thousand-year history behind the winter accessory.
The fluffy fabrics weren’t always used for decorative purposes, but people have only recently learned what they were originally for.
Some believe the pompons were worn on clothing from the Viking Age from AD 793 to 1066 before the Magna Carta was written.
The mythological god Freyr was depicted wearing a head covering that himself wore a pompom.
It can be seen on the statuette found in Södermanland, Sweden, in 1904.
In some European countries, bobble hats were also used to define rank.
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Clergymen in Rome wore hats called birettas and they wore different colored pompoms to indicate what work they were doing.
Soldiers like those of the Scottish Highland regiments and Napoleon’s infantry also wore wooly pompons on their uniforms.
They not only kept the soldiers warm, but also indicated which regiment the troops belonged to.
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For the sailors, too, it is said to have protected the head from low ceilings in a confined space.
Then, during the Depression, pompoms became mainstream.
Some also believe that celebrities like Michael Nesmith from The Monkees helped popularize the cozy hat.
Nesmith wore it during her TV shows.
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So there you have it, the long, storied history of the pompoms on your child’s winter hat.
From Viking ships and mythological gods to religious headgear in Rome and Napoleonic battlefields, the pompon has been all over the world.