words of art

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Words of art is a reference to terminology with a meaning that is specific to a particular profession, art, science, technology, or other field; or jargon that is only known to those who have a particular occupation.

For example, in a civil matter, the plaintiff is the party who brings a lawsuit while the defendant is the party being sued. Plaintiff and defendant are “words of art” in the legal field.

[Last updated in February of 2022 by the Wex Definitions Team]