The hustings
Posted: 26 January 2018 01:59 PM   [ Ignore ]
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As in the platform that politicians speak from in elections (< Old Norse hús-þing, house-assembly) I can’t see any US examples in OED. Is this term used in the States?

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Posted: 26 January 2018 02:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Yes, it is, at least among journalists and newscasters.

Big List

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Posted: 26 January 2018 06:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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aldiboronti - 26 January 2018 01:59 PM

As in the platform that politicians speak from in elections (< Old Norse hús-þing, house-assembly) I can’t see any US examples in OED. Is this term used in the States?

I haven’t heard it in quite a while, though it was often heard on radio reports of political campaigns in the 1950s and 1960s.

As I recall, the noun was never a standalone.  Rather, it was part of the phrase on the hustings.

Merriam-Webster offers this:

Definition of on the hustings

: making speeches, meeting people, etc., in order to get people’s votes : campaigning for a political office candidates who are (out) on the hustings

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Posted: 27 January 2018 03:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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It’s the platform?!  I always thought it meant ‘on the campaign trail.’

Edit:  Shoulda checked the Big List first.

[ Edited: 27 January 2018 03:17 AM by Faldage ]
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Posted: 27 January 2018 02:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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As should I have done. That Big List is like Topsy, it growed and growed!

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Posted: 27 January 2018 03:18 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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There is an AE expression very close to on the hustings:  on the stump.  Is this known in BE?

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Posted: 28 January 2018 06:48 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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There is an AE expression very close to on the hustings:  on the stump.

There is?  I’m AE, and I’m not familiar with it.

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Posted: 28 January 2018 06:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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The OED (1919) has a 1775 sense for the noun stump as a speaking platform and 1814 for on the stump. It is, of course, from using a tree stump as a platform. It’s an Americanism, but the OED has this note: “In the U.S. the word ‘does not necessarily convey a derogatory implication’ ( Cent. Dict.). In Britain, though now common, it is still felt to be somewhat undignified.”

[Addition: Safire’s Political Dictionary has a 1716 reference to a stump being used as a speaking platform, but the word isn’t being used metaphorically. It’s a literal stump. Reading it, there’s no sense that the word was a term of art this early.]

The British National Corpus (1980s–1993) has several hits for on the stump, but it appears to be much less common than in the US.

There’s also stump speech, a standard oration that a candidate repeatedly delivers on the campaign trail.

[ Edited: 28 January 2018 07:03 AM by Dave Wilton ]
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Posted: 28 January 2018 12:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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There’s also stump as a verb, meaning to campaign, electioneer, or go about making speeches in support of some cause. OED has that cited ante 1838.

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Posted: 28 January 2018 01:54 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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languagehat - 28 January 2018 06:48 AM

There is an AE expression very close to on the hustings:  on the stump.

There is?  I’m AE, and I’m not familiar with it.

I’m surprised you are not familiar with it.  The New Yorker magazine used (uses?) it as a section title for campaign reporting.
example: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2013/02/11/after-a-jad
It’s not obscure.  https://www.cnn.com/2017/08/14/politics/trump-campaign-rally-lawsuit/index.html
I think NPR also used it as a series title.

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Posted: 28 January 2018 05:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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I’m familiar with stump speech, of course, and as a regular reader of the New Yorker I’ve obviously seen that heading repeatedly, but I guess it never sank in because I never picked it up as a phrase the way I did on the hustings.

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