Raths"kel`ler(rts"kl*lr), n. [G., also ratskeller, prop., town-hall cellar.] Orig., in Germany, the cellar or basement of the city hall, usually rented for use as a restaurant where beer is sold; hence, a beer saloon of the German type below the street level, where, usually, drinks are served only at tables and simple food may also be had; -- sometimes loosely used, in English, of what are essentially basement restaurants where liquors are served.
[Webster 1913 Suppl.]
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