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  1. #1
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Question my hat goes off to you

    Hello! Can a woman say "My hat goes off to you", if she refers to the respect to "you"? Thanks!

    P.S. I am clear about the meaning of the idiom.
    Last edited by thedaffodils; 29-Oct-2008 at 12:45.

  2. #2
    supada is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: my hat goes off to you

    Would you mind telling me the meaning of this phrase?

  3. #3
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Default Re: my hat goes off to you

    Quote Originally Posted by supada View Post
    Would you mind telling me the meaning of this phrase?
    Hello Supada,

    I think it is the variation of the idiom - I take my hat off to you. Here's the excerpt from an online dictionary with its URL link available as below.

    took hat off - Idioms - by the Free Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia.


    I take my hat off to someone (British, American & Australian, American)


    something that you say which means that you admire and respect someone for something they have done. I take my hat off to people who do voluntary work in their spare time.I tip my hat to our teachers who've raised standards in the school with very few resources.



  4. #4
    MrPedantic is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: my hat goes off to you

    That's a very good point. Customarily, in BrE culture at least, only males may doff their headgear as a gesture of respect. Thus while hat-tipping idioms are seemingly available to all speakers, it may seem incongruous or somehow "masculine" for an obviously female speaker to use them.

    (It might seem similarly incongruous if an obviously male speaker talked about "handbagging" an adversary in an argument.)

    Best wishes,

    MrP

    Not a professional ESL teacher.

  5. #5
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Default Re: my hat goes off to you

    Hello Mr. Pedantic,

    Thank you for your input.

    I'm a woman. Whenever I used it, I couldn't suppress the idea that I might look like a tomboy.

    Is there any comparable idiom which sounds feminine or neutral?

    Best regards,

    TD

  6. #6
    SUDHKAMP's Avatar
    SUDHKAMP is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: my hat goes off to you

    Quote Originally Posted by thedaffodils View Post
    Hello Mr. Pedantic,

    Thank you for your input.

    I'm a woman. Whenever I used it, I couldn't suppress the idea that I might look like a tomboy.

    Is there any comparable idiom which sounds feminine or neutral?

    Best regards,

    TD
    I have heard people saying "hats off to so and so........ for doing...........".

    Thus it becomes neutral. In the first person you can say, "hats off to you Raymott for helping me solve the problem."

  7. #7
    MrPedantic is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: my hat goes off to you

    1. Hats off to X (for doing Y).

    I would agree as a general adjuration to all those present, it very nicely avoids the sociolinguistic incongruity.

    Best wishes,

    MrP

    Not a professional ESL teacher.

  8. #8
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Default Re: my hat goes off to you

    SUDHKAMP & Mr Pedantic,

    Thank you for your replies.

    But I think "hats off to somebody" might sound a bit pompous if an individual just did a favour to another individual. And "hat" in plural in the expression of "hats off" implies that the person was acclaimed by many people or the public.

    Eg1 SUDHKAMP and Mr Pedantic often help us to learn English, hats off to them. <==good application of the expression.

    Eg2 (In their house, just Dad just gave his daughter a favour.)

    Daughter: Dad, could you teach me to ride a bicycle?

    Dad: No problem.

    Daughter: Hats off to you. (I don't think it is very appropriate since the daughter could not stand for the opinions of the others'. If they didn't have any relatives who might appreciate the father's favour.)

  9. #9
    SUDHKAMP's Avatar
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    Default Re: my hat goes off to you

    Hats off does not always mean that many people would take off their hats to wish or show respect. "Hats off" here means action by a single person or may be many.
    It is appropriate to use this term in singular also.

  10. #10
    thedaffodils's Avatar
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    Default Re: my hat goes off to you

    Quote Originally Posted by SUDHKAMP View Post
    Hats off does not always mean that many people would take off their hats to wish or show respect. "Hats off" here means action by a single person or may be many.
    It is appropriate to use this term in singular also.
    Hats off to you, SUDHKAMP! I've understood.

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