INNKEEPER. He is defined to be the keeper of a common inn for the lodging and entertainment of travellers and passengers, their horses and attendants, for a reasonable compensation. Bac. Ab. Inns, &c.; Story, Bailm. 475. But one who entertains strangers occasionally, although he may receive compensation for it, is not an innkeeper. 2 Dev. & Bat. 424.
2. His duties will be first considered and, secondly, his rights.
3. - 1. He is bound to take in and receive all travellers and wayfaring persons, and to entertain them, if he can accommodate them, for a reasonable compensation; and he must guard their goods with proper diligence. He is liable only for the goods which are brought within the inn. 8 Co. 32; Jones' Bailm. 91. A delivery of the goods into the custody of the innkeeper is not, however, necessary, in order to make him responsible; for although he may not know anything of such goods, he is bound to pay for them if they are stolen or carried away, even by an unknown person; 8 Co. 32; Hayw. N. C. R. 41; 14 John. R. 175; 1 Bell's Com. 469; and if he receive the guest, the custody of the goods may be considered as an* accessory to the principal contract; and the money paid for the apartments as extending to the care of the box and portmanteau. Jones' Bailm. 94; Story, Bailm. 470; 1 Bl. Com. 430; 2 Kent, Com. 458 to 463. The degree of care which the innkeeper is bound to take is uncommon care, and he will be liable for a slight negligence. He is responsible for the acts of his domestics and servants, as well as for the acts of his other guests, if the goods are stolen or lost; but he is not responsible for any tort or injury done by his servants or others, to the, person of his guest, without his own cooperation or consent. 8 Co. 32. The innkeeper will be excused whenever the loss has occurred through the fault of the guest. Story, Bailm. 483: 4 M. & S. 306; S. C. 1 Stark. R. 251, note 2 Kent, Com. 461; 1 Yeates' R. 34.
4. - 2. The innkeeper is entitled to a just compensation for his care and trouble in taking care of his guest and his property; and to enable him to obtain this, the law invests him with some peculiar privileges, giving him alien upon the goods, of the guest, brought into the inn, and, it is said, upon the person of his guest, for his compensation. 3 B. & Ald. 287; 8 Mod. 172; 1 Shower, Rep. 270; Bac. Ab. Inns, &c., D. But the horse of the guest can be detained only for his own keeping, and not for the boarding and personal expenses of the guest. Bac. Ab. h. t. The landlord may also bring an action for the recovery of his compensation. Vide, generally, 1 Vin. Ab. 224; 14 Vin. Ab. 436; Bac. Ab. h. t.; Yelv. 67, a, 162, a; 2 Kent, Com. 458; Ayl. Pand. 266; 9 Pick. 280; 21 Wend. 285; 1 Yeates, 35: Oliph. on the Law of Horses, 125; Bouv. Inst. Index, h. t.