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    Mehrgan's Avatar
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    Question 'Podium', 'rostrum', or 'soapbox'?

    Hi all,
    Would anyone please tell me which one, in case they refer to the same thing, has the most common usage in everyday English?


    Thanks!

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    Default Re: 'Podium', 'rostrum', or 'soapbox'?

    British National Corpus figures are:

    rostrum - 141
    Podium-114
    soapbox 44

    I did not read through them all to check that they were referring to the same thing.

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    Default Re: 'Podium', 'rostrum', or 'soapbox'?

    Note that this doesn't mean: 'Use 'rostrum; - that way you're fairly sure to be right'. Corpora are good things - irreplaceable, I think. But they are only an indication of what has been used in a particular corpus, not what it is appropriate to use. OK, I'll get down off my soapbox.*

    b
    PS * See what I did there? This is an idiom: when you 'get down off your soapbox' you stop ranting about something you often say. 'I'll get down off my rostrum/podium' is not an option. 'Soapbox' is a metaphor; public speakers used to stand on them. Today, I'm not sure if they exist - and if they do they wouldn't be sturdy enough to take a speaker's weight.

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    Default Re: 'Podium', 'rostrum', or 'soapbox'?

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    Note that this doesn't mean: 'Use 'rostrum; - that way you're fairly sure to be right'. Corpora are good things - irreplaceable, I think. But they are only an indication of what has been used in a particular corpus, not what it is appropriate to use.
    I agree.

    I meant to suggest this with my, "I did not read through them all to check that they were referring to the same thing," but I was not explicit enough.

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    Question Re: 'Podium', 'rostrum', or 'soapbox'?

    Thanks to you both for the very helpful comments!

    Wish you best!

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