TAVERN, the old name for an inn, a public house where liquor is sold and food is supplied to travellers. It is, however, now usually applied to a small ale-house where liquor only is supplied. The word comes through Fr. from Lat. taberna, a booth, shop, inn. It is usually connected with the root seen in " tabula," board, whence Eng. " table;" and thus meant originally a hut or booth made of planks or boards of wood.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)