tav·​ern | \ ˈta-vərn How to pronounce tavern (audio) \

Definition of tavern

1 : an establishment where alcoholic beverages are sold to be drunk on the premises
2 : inn

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Synonyms for tavern


bar, barroom, café (also cafe), cantina [Southwest], dramshop, gin mill, grogshop [chiefly British], pub, public house [chiefly British], saloon, taproom, watering hole, watering place

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Examples of tavern in a Sentence

a seedy section of the city's waterfront that was rife with cheap taverns, tattoo parlors, and run-down flophouses a colonial-era tavern that has been serving weary travelers for two and a half centuries

Recent Examples on the Web

Isolina, a tavern-style restaurant housed in a historic building, serves up Peruvian fare prepared much like it has been made in homes for generations. Catherine Elton, WSJ, "A Bohemian Neighborhood in Peru Gets a Luxury Lift," 10 Jan. 2019 This time, the show chooses to literally close the doors on the attack itself, instead focusing on the tavern patrons' indifference to (and in some cases, bemusement at) Brianna's screams and cries from the back. Julie Kosin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Outlander's Sophie Skelton Breaks Down Brianna's Harrowing Assault," 24 Dec. 2018 The tap room will be in the 4,000-square-foot space that was formerly the funeral home and will have an old-time tavern look, Newberry said. Jennie Key, Cincinnati.com, "Wiedemann brewery: Iconic brand back with beer garden," 21 June 2018 In 2012, Mat and Sharry Englehorn opened the tavern at Second and McKinley streets in the couple's former real-estate broker office. Jennifer Mcclellan, azcentral, "Angels Trumpet Ale House opening 2nd Phoenix location," 8 May 2018 Now the town is the world's largest living history museum, with more than 300 acres, 40 historic sites and trades, four historic taverns, and two art museums. Laura Johnston, cleveland.com, "Colonial Williamsburg recreates Virginia capital on the eve of American Revolution," 18 Apr. 2018 One man was charged Tuesday in a fatal shooting outside busy taverns on downtown Milwaukee's Water St. and two others with being felons with guns. Bruce Vielmetti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Three charged in August homicide outside busy downtown Milwaukee taverns," 23 Jan. 2018 At least five buildings were damaged, including the Barr House tavern, Glass Nickel Pizza and a steak restaurant, according to a news release on the city’s website. Washington Post, "Firefighter killed in gas explosion, fire near Madison," 11 July 2018 Chet's is a classic roadside tavern, with a pool table, a jukebox, a popcorn machine, and a large clientele of bikers. Edward Mcclelland, Chicago Reader, "Meet Resurrection Mary, the ghost of Archer Avenue," 26 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'tavern.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of tavern

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for tavern

Middle English taverne, from Anglo-French, from Latin taberna hut, shop

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Dictionary Entries near tavern






tavern car


Statistics for tavern

Last Updated

19 May 2019

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Time Traveler for tavern

The first known use of tavern was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for tavern



English Language Learners Definition of tavern

: a place where alcoholic drinks are served
old-fashioned : a building that provides lodging and food for people who are traveling


tav·​ern | \ ˈta-vərn How to pronounce tavern (audio) \

Kids Definition of tavern

1 : a place where beer and liquor are sold and drunk
2 : inn

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More from Merriam-Webster on tavern

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with tavern

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for tavern

Spanish Central: Translation of tavern

Nglish: Translation of tavern for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of tavern for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about tavern

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