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The Merry Widow, the English translation of the operetta Die Lustige Witwe, was staged in London and on Broadway in 1907 and was an immediate success. One of the most noticeable features of the costumes, designed by Lucille (Lucy, Lady Duff-Gordon, who would survive the sinking of the Titanic roughly 5 years later), were the over sized plumed hats, which came to be known as Merry Widow Hats. They were extremely popular but also seen as a bit of a public nuisance - they could reach widths as large as 18 inches and were hard to see around in public places like the theater or church and even had a habit of hitting bystanders on the street. While brim sizes fluctuated, large hats of the Merry Widow style stayed in vogue in some shape and form until the beginning of the great war.