The Top Hat was originally created by and English hatter, with George Dunner from Middlesex named as the likely first man to make one, or, maybe John Hetherington at the end of the 18th Century. Originally it was a hat pour tout, as all social classes started wearing it., ad Beau Brummel popularised it too. Later on, it was became less popular and increasingly confined to special position of the wearer or to special events. It is the only hat to be worn with White Tie (in black only) or Morning Suit (black or grey). It is still mandatory in the Queen's Stand at the Epsom Derby and the Royal Enclosure at Royal Ascot, at certain equestrian dressage events, and it is often part of the uniform for butlers, concierges and door staff in elegant top luxury hotels.
It comes in a taller version (the Opera Hat) and a less tall design called the Town Shell (see the Top Hat in the photos above).