Definition of hustings
1a : a local court formerly held in various English municipalities and still held infrequently in Londonb : a local court in some cities in Virginia
2a : a raised platform used until 1872 for the nomination of candidates for the British Parliament and for election speechesb : an election platform : stumpc : the proceedings or locale of an election campaign
hustings was our Word of the Day on 01/20/2008. Hear the podcast!
Did You Know?
Hustings are where babies are kissed, flesh is pressed, and media events are staged. The term traces to an Old Norse word meaning "house assembly," and 1000 years ago hustings were judicial assemblies where Anglo-Saxon kings and their followers held council and resolved civil disputes. Over time, "hustings" came to refer not only to the assembly but also to the platform where the leaders of such gatherings sat, and in due course the term was applied to the entire campaigning process as well. Nowadays, "on the hustings" is synonymous with "on the stump," and it can refer to any place along the campaign trail where a candidate makes a pitch for public office.
Origin and Etymology of hustings
Middle English, from Old English hūsting, from Old Norse hūsthing, from hūs house + thing assembly
First Known Use: before 12th century
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