- The definition of an artifice is a skill or craft that is clever but often manipulative or tricky.
An example of an artifice is the story a con artist uses to convince you to give him your money.
artifice definition by Webster's New World
- skill or ingenuity
- a clever expedient
- trickery or craft
- a sly or artful trick
Origin: Old French ; from Classical Latin artificium, craft ; from artifex, artist, master of a trade ; from ars, art plush facere, do
artifice definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- An artful or crafty expedient; a stratagem. See Synonyms at wile.
- Subtle but base deception; trickery.
- Cleverness or skill; ingenuity.
Origin: French, from Old French, craftsmanship, from Latin artificium, from artifex, artific-, craftsman : ars, art-, art; see art1 + -fex, maker; see dhē- in Indo-European roots.