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Types Of Popes Hat

What Is the Pope’s Hat Called? – Types of Pope’s Hats

When all of us think about the catholic church, the first picture which comes to our mind is the pope. They have always been one of the influential figures, as a leader of the Catholic Church, promulgating doctrine, leading nations, and kissing all the babies. Most of us know that they travel in bulletproof cars and bless people, but how many of us know about the pope’s hat? Now, let’s see what a pope’s hat is called and why it resembles the open mouth of a fish.

What Is the Pope’s Hat Called?

According to Wikipedia, a pope hat can refer to the papal tiara, mitre, Zucchetto, Camauro, Cappello Romano. While a pope only will wear the papal tiara, the rest of the headdresses were worn by popes, bishops, senior abbots, cardinals,  and priests.

All Type of Pope’s Hats and Headgears

1. Papal Tiara

papal tiara

Papal Tiara is a jeweled three-tiered crown, which was worn by popes of the Catholic Church from the 8th to mid 20th century. Pope Paul VI lastly used it in 1963, who was the head of the Catholic Church and sovereign of Vatican City. Papal Tiara was adorned with various crowns, circlets, and diadems and still looking beautiful beyond words through ages.

There is no evidence on what the three crowns mean, but people believe that it is associated with the threefolds of Jesus, which are priest, prophet, and King.

Actually, the main use of the tiara is to be served as a crown during the coronation of the new pope. The tiara should be attached to the two lappets; which are decorative pieces of cloth designed with golden thread, bearing the coat of arms.

2. Mitre

mitre hat

This type of hat comes to every man’s mind when they think of a pope. Mitre hat is a tall ceremonial headdress that is worn by bishops and senior abbots in traditional Christian communities. It is made up of plain white silk and simply larger with golden ornaments. It is a ceremonial headdress that is worn by popes, bishops, and also clergy officials. 

All bishops wear them in catholic churches, orthodox churches, Lutheran churches, Anglican communion, eastern catholic churches, and some oriental orthodox churches.

To your information, there are three types of mitre.

types of mitre
  1. Simplex: The simplest form of mitre is made up of white linen. This is worn by bishops mostly during funerals and masses.
  2. Auriphrygiata: Auriphrygiata is made up of plain gold cloth or also white cloth using golden ornaments.
  3. Pretiosa: As the name sounds, the pretiosa hat is made up of various stones and golden ornaments to accentuate it. It is mostly worn during the time of principal mass.

3. Zucchetto

zucchetto hat

Of course, you might have seen this hat on the head of Pope Francis. They are worn by popes and also the clergy officials of the catholic community. Zucchettos come in various colors to be worn by bishops and popes according to their ranks. Popes wear a white Zucchetto, for constant wearing, especially during visits. Cardinals wear scarlet zucchettos, whereas bishops, territorial abbots wear amaranth, and priests and deacons wear black.

Zucchettos are called by various names, like pilus, pilos, pilleus, pileolus, calotte, and more! It is mostly made up of silk and polyester fabric, which is designed to form a hemispherical skull cap using eight triangular panels. An interesting fact is, these Zucchetto hats can be given as a gift of the pope either by handling it to the believer or even put on on the believer’s head.

4. Camauro

pops camauro hats

To be precise, camauros are winter caps worn instead of white zucchettos from the 12th century to 2005. The word Camauro is derived from the Greek word “Kamelauchion” which means camel skin hat. Although camauros are made up of red wool, velvet, and lined with white ermine trim. Pope traditionally wears Camauros. They are worn with a red mozzetta to protect tonsured heads during cold temperatures.

In 1464, it was worn by cardinals and fell into disuse after the death of John XXIII in 1963. Again, it was brought back by Benedict XVI in December 2005, which led the media to compare with Santa Claus and  St. Nicholas, an early Christian bishop.

5. Cappello Romano

cappello romano

Cappello Romano is a word that is derived from the Italian language, which means a “Roman hat.” This is a wide circular brimmed hat, with a rounded crown which is usually worn for outdoor usage by the Catholic clergy officials in a cassock.

These Capello hats are usually made up of straw, beaver fur, and felt and lined with white silk. They serve only for practical reasons with no ceremonial purposes. The Pope wears a red Capello with golden cords, and cardinals wear black. Bishops wear green and golden cords with violet lining.

What Is a Bishop’s Hat Called?

A bishop’s hat is called a mitre, a traditional headdress made up of white silk fabric adorned with gold. 

Another type of hat bishops usually wear are red zucchettos, also known as skull caps. Believers relate zucchettos with the liturgical headdress of the Jewish High Priesthood.

Why Does the Pope Wear a Mitre?

The mitre hats, which are worn by popes, cardinals, and catholic bishops, represent Dagan, the Babylonian fish god. Mitre was always worn by the kippa of Cybele/Ashtoreth as it is still a follower until today in Roman Catholic churches.

Why is the Pope’s Mitre Shaped Like a Fish?

If you have closely seen the pope’s mitre, you would have noticed that it resembles the open mouth of a fish. The two-horned mitre, worn by the pope, represents Dagan and Cybele, the fish god and goddess of Philistines and Babylonians. The ancient people of Babylonia believe Dagan is the god of agriculture, wealth, and life.

Is the Papal Tiara Still Used?

Wikipedia states that, in 1964, when the third session of the second Vatican council ended, Pope Paul VI stepped down again his papal throne in st. Peter’s Basilica went towards the altar, where he laid his tiara as an act of renunciation.

It was declared that the tiara would be sold,  offered the money to charity and to help people in need. The tiara was purchased by Catholics in the US and is now placed in a permanent display in the memorial hall in the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Corporation.

Final Thoughts

Popes are always the world’s most popular figures, as catholic church leaders and an epitome of holiness.

Both the pope and his hat have a huge following, so many asked us what a pope’s hat is called.  It’s called a mitre, but that’s not the only one Pope Francais wears. He also wears a Zucchetto, Camauro, and he’s been seen wearing sombreros, Australian bush hats, and even baseball caps. Additionally, a headdress was also presented to him by the Brazilian tribe. Like us, Pope Francis likes hats too!

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