Three cornered hats were once the most popular style of male headwear. Throughout Europe, North America and the many countries of the various European empires, the tricorn hat was enormously popular.The painting below was completed in 1730 by the Venetian artist Canaletto. as you can see, almost all the men in the foreground are wearing these distinctive hats.
The tricorn was popular throughout the eighteenth century in almost all the countries of western Europe. It was a true fashion phenomenon.
The hats evolved from broad brimmed hats worn by spanish soliders in the 17th Century.
You can see the ostritch feathers which remained popular adornments in tricorn hats for the next century and are still seen worn in the hats of town criers today.