ar·​ti·​san | \ˈär-tə-zən, -sən, chiefly British ˌä-tə-ˈzan\

Definition of artisan 

1 : a worker who practices a trade or handicraft : craftsperson a skilled artisan

2 : a person or company that produces something (such as cheese or wine) in limited quantities often using traditional methods often used before another noun artisan breads

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Other Words from artisan

artisanship \ -​ˌship \ noun

Did You Know?

Artisans aren't the same as artists, but it can sometimes be hard to tell the difference. In the Middle Ages, artisans organized themselves into guilds. In every city each group of artisans—weavers, carpenters, shoemakers, and so on—had its own guild, which set wages and prices, kept standards high, and protected its members from outside competitors. In America, however, most artisans have always been fiercely independent. Today, when factories produce almost all of our goods, artisans usually make only fine objects for those who can afford them. And we now even include food among the artisan's crafts, so you can buy artisanal cheeses, breads, and chocolates—but probably not if you're watching your budget.

Examples of artisan in a Sentence

They sell rugs made by local artisans. we visited a re-created 19th-century New England village that features an array of artisans—a cooper, a carpenter, a blacksmith, a potter, a glassblower

Recent Examples on the Web

Markle accessorized with an oversized clutch made by local artisans and black espadrilles by Castañer. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Meghan Markle Wears Jason Wu and Self-Portrait to Visit Fiji and Tonga During Royal Tour," 25 Oct. 2018 Pieces are collected over time and are usually vintage, secondhand, or bought from local artisans. Sienna Fantozzi, House Beautiful, "Everything You Need To Know About Bohemian Design," 19 Oct. 2018 Portland-import Salt & Straw collaborates with local artisans to create distinctly Seattle flavors. Morgan Goldberg, USA TODAY, "The Emerald City's ultimate ice cream trail," 18 June 2018 Although more accustomed to making tennis racquets and cricket bats, a local artisan was nonetheless able to restitch the ball and, even better, replicate it, according to the Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The Economist, "Pakistan faces a currency crisis. Who will help?," 14 June 2018 Those were designed by Joanna and handmade by local metalwork artisan Jimmy Don of Stars Over Texas Metal Art. Simon Dumenco, Country Living, "17 Things to Know About Chip and Joanna Gaines' Magnolia Market at the Silos," 12 June 2018 Red Stag: The upscale shop designed with men in mind carries handsome, masculine gift items like European antiques, local artisans work, fine furnishings and high-end home decor items. Michelle Newman, San Antonio Express-News, "New Braunfels: Your guide to shopping, dining and hotels," 11 June 2018 Visitors can speak with skilled artisans who demonstrate the daily life of both cultures. Courant Community, "Community News For The Vernon Edition," 15 May 2018 Two retail shops round out the mix: Market Place with Texas jams and jellies, local-artisan jewelry and accessories and Nosh & Bottle Market offers up craft beer and wine, epicurean products and gourmet prepared foods. Courtney Dabney, star-telegram, "This massive Irving entertainment complex has more to offer than just live music | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 11 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'artisan.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of artisan

circa 1538, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for artisan

Middle French, from northern Italian dialect form of Tuscan artigiano, from arte art, from Latin art-, ars

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Statistics for artisan

Last Updated

12 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for artisan

The first known use of artisan was circa 1538

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More Definitions for artisan



English Language Learners Definition of artisan

: a person who is skilled at making things by hand


ar·​ti·​san | \ˈär-tə-zən \

Kids Definition of artisan

: a person who makes things by using skill with the hands

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Comments on artisan

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to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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