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[tav-ern] /ˈtæv ərn/
a place where liquors are sold to be consumed on the premises.
a public house for travelers and others; inn.
1250-1300; Middle English taverne < Old French < Latin taberna hut, inn, wine shop
Related forms
tavernless, adjective
1. bar; pub. 2. hostelry. See hotel. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for taverns


a less common word for pub
(US & Eastern Canadian, NZ) a place licensed for the sale and consumption of alcoholic drink
Word Origin
C13: from Old French taverne, from Latin taberna hut
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for taverns



late 13c., "wine shop," later "public house" (mid-15c.), from Old French taverne (mid-13c.) "shed made of boards, booth, stall," also "tavern, inn," from Latin taberna "shop, inn, tavern," originally "hut, shed," possibly by dissimilation from *traberna, from trabs (genitive trabis) "beam, timber."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for taverns


an establishment where alcoholic beverages are sold for consumption on the premises. Tavern keeping has paralleled the growth of trade, travel, and industry throughout history and virtually worldwide. The Code of Hammurabi of ancient Babylonia (c. 1750 BC) provided that the death penalty could be imposed upon a proprietor for diluting beer. In ancient Greece the lesche, which was primarily a local club, served meals to strangers as well as to its local members. By the 5th century BC there were sumptuous Greek establishments called phatnai that served a local and transient clientele of traders, envoys, and government officials.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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