definitions
  • synonyms

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.

Nearby words

articulator, articulatory feature, articulatory loop, articulatory phonetics, artie, artifact, artifacting, artifactitious, artifactual, artifice, artificer

Origin of artifact

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

    Histology of the Blood|Paul Ehrlich

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.
Related formsar′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.