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hustings

[huhs-tingz]
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noun (used with a singular or plural verb)
  1. (before 1872) the temporary platform on which candidates for the British Parliament stood when nominated and from which they addressed the electors.
  2. any place from which political campaign speeches are made.
  3. the political campaign trail.
  4. Also called hustings court. a local court in certain parts of Virginia.

Origin of hustings

before 1050; Middle English, Old English < Old Danish hūs-thing house meeting. See house, thing2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for hustings

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • They figure in the budget, and are formidable on the hustings.

    Barrington

    Charles James Lever

  • Over the hustings he introduced a glimpse of the old Ipswich gables.

  • I should think so: a man for whom I stood godfather at the hustings, Mr. Dale!

    My Novel, Complete

    Edward Bulwer-Lytton

  • He could not go up on the hustings, and there defy the duke.

    Framley Parsonage</p>

    Anthony Trollope

  • You cannot set up the hustings in an armed camp of twenty-eight millions.

    The Arena

    Various


British Dictionary definitions for hustings

hustings

noun (functioning as plural or singular)
  1. British (before 1872) the platform on which candidates were nominated for Parliament and from which they addressed the electors
  2. the proceedings at a parliamentary election
  3. political campaigning

Word Origin

C11: from Old Norse hūsthing, from hūs house + thing assembly
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for hustings

n.

Old English husting "meeting, court, tribunal," from Old Norse husðing "council," from hus "house" (see house (n.)) + ðing "assembly" (see thing); so called because it was a meeting of the men who formed the "household" of a nobleman or king. The native Anglo-Saxon word for this was folc-gemot. The plural became the usual form c.1500; sense of "temporary platform for political speeches" developed by 1719, apparently from London's Court of Hustings, presided over by the Lord Mayor, which was held on a platform in the Guildhall. This sense broadened to encompass the whole election process.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

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