• synonyms


[raht-skel-er, rat-, rath-]
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  1. (in Germany) the cellar of a town hall, often used as a beer hall or restaurant.
  2. a restaurant patterned on the German rathskeller, usually located below street level.
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Origin of rathskeller

1860–65; < German, equivalent to Rath (extracted from Rathaus town hall) + -s 's1 + Keller cellar
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for rathskeller

bistro, tavern, pub, lounge, inn, saloon, tap, taproom, barroom, canteen, rathskeller, alehouse, bar, drinkery

Examples from the Web for rathskeller

Historical Examples of rathskeller

  • He had disliked the young man "Tacks" when he met him in the Rathskeller.

    Cap'n Dan's Daughter

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • "We'll get a bite to eat down in the Rathskeller," he suggested gaily.


    George Looms

  • Mr. Scanlon was willing, and so they made their way from the rathskeller into the sunlight.

  • It was in the rathskeller that Highsmith made the hit of his histrionic career.

  • The Rathskeller is well-conducted, and was built by the municipal authorities.

Word Origin and History for rathskeller


1900, from German ratskeller, earlier rathskeller, "a cellar in a German town hall in which beer is sold," from rat "council" (see rede (n.)) + keller "cellar" (see cellar (n.)). The German -h- inserted to avoid association with the word for "rat."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper