artifact

or ar·te·fact

[ ahr-tuh-fakt ]
/ ˈɑr təˌfækt /

noun

any object made by human beings, especially with a view to subsequent use.
a handmade object, as a tool, or the remains of one, as a shard of pottery, characteristic of an earlier time or cultural stage, especially such an object found at an archaeological excavation.
any mass-produced, usually inexpensive object reflecting contemporary society or popular culture: artifacts of the pop rock generation.
a substance or structure not naturally present in the matter being observed but formed by artificial means, as during preparation of a microscope slide.
a spurious observation or result arising from preparatory or investigative procedures.
any feature that is not naturally present but is a product of an extrinsic agent, method, or the like: statistical artifacts that make the inflation rate seem greater than it is.

Origin of artifact

1815–25; variant of artefact < Latin phrase arte factum (something) made with skill. See art1, fact

OTHER WORDS FROM artifact

ar·ti·fac·tu·al [ahr-tuh-fak-choo-uh l] /ˌɑr təˈfæk tʃu əl/, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for artefact

  • Hence it is extremely difficult to distinguish what is preformed, and what is artefact.

British Dictionary definitions for artefact (1 of 2)

artefact

artifact

/ (ˈɑːtɪˌfækt) /

noun

something made or given shape by man, such as a tool or a work of art, esp an object of archaeological interest
anything man-made, such as a spurious experimental result
cytology a structure seen in tissue after death, fixation, staining, etc, that is not normally present in the living tissue

Word Origin for artefact

C19: from Latin phrase arte factum, from ars skill + facere to make

British Dictionary definitions for artefact (2 of 2)

artifact
/ (ˈɑːtɪˌfækt) /

noun

a variant spelling of artefact
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Medicine definitions for artefact (1 of 2)

artefact
[ ärtə-făkt′ ]

n.

Variant ofartifact

Medicine definitions for artefact (2 of 2)

artifact

n.

A structure or substance not normally present but produced by an external agent or action, such as a structure seen in a microscopic specimen after fixation that is not present in the living tissue.
A skin lesion produced or perpetuated by self-inflicted action.

Other words from artifact

ar′ti•fac•titious (-făk-tĭshəs) null adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for artefact

artifact

An object produced or shaped by human craft, especially a tool, weapon, or ornament of archaeological or historical interest.
An artificial product or effect observed in a natural system, especially one introduced by the technology used in scientific investigation or by experimental error.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.