American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. An establishment licensed to sell alcoholic beverages to be consumed on the premises.
- n. An inn for travelers.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A public house where wines and other liquors are sold, and where food is provided for travelers and other guests; a public house where both food and drink are supplied; an inn. Taverns existed in England as early as the thirteenth century. At first only wines and liquors were sold.
- n. Synonyms Inn, Tavern, Hotel, House. In the United States inn and tavern are rarely now popularly applied to places of public entertainment, except sometimes as quaint or affected terms; but in law tavern is sometimes used for any place of public entertainment where liquor is sold under license. Hotel is the general word, or, often, house as the name of a particular hotel.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. A public house where travelers and other transient guests are accomodated with rooms and meals; an inn; a hotel; especially, in modern times, a public house licensed to sell liquor in small quantities.
- n. a building with a bar that is licensed to sell alcoholic drinks
- From Old French taverne ("wine shop"), from Latin taberna ("inn"). (Wiktionary)
- Middle English taverne, from Old French, from Latin taberna, hut, tavern, probably from *traberna, from trabs, trab-, beam; see trave. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“John Crockett moved still westward to this Holston valley, where he reared a pretty large log house on this forest road; and opened what he called a tavern for the entertainment of teamsters and other emigrants.”
“The revamped tavern is now a visitors center for Central Park, where tourists can sign up for nature tours or visit a gift shop.”
“The tavern was a smoky den of laughter and curses, rank with the smell of soured dreams.”
“Mr. Martin writes that the tavern was the "18th century Internet," but I doubt that the brilliant repartee recorded by Boswell and others is to be found in cyberspace.”
“Johnson called a tavern chair "the throne of human felicity.”
“The tavern was the last occupied house on the street, which ran west.”
“Convivial meetings were all the vogue, and the tavern was the universal rallying-place of good-fellowship.”
“Just beyond the tavern was a fuller's, but so dingy that Kharl wouldn't have wanted anything cleaned there.”
“The captain went with us, and carried us to a certain house, whether it was to be called a tavern or not I know not, but we had a bowl of punch there made of rum, etc., and were very merry.”
“The man she accosted just outside the alleyway next to the tavern was a little more careful, but not enough to spot Alberich.”
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