A craft is a branch of a profession that requires some particular kind of skilled work. In historical sense, particularly as pertinent to the Medieval history and earlier, the term is usually applied towards people occupied in small-scale production of goods.
Development from the past until today
Historically, craftsmen tended to concentrate in urban centers and formed the guilds. Trade occupation and the need to be permanently involved in the exchange of goods also demanded a generally higher level of education and in societal hierarchy the craftsmen were usually in a more privileged position than the peasantry.
Once an apprentice of a craft had finished his apprenticeship, he would become a journeyman searching for a place to set up his own shop and make a living. After he set up his own shop he could then be called a master of his craft.
This system of a stepwise approach to mastery of a craft which invokes the obtainment of a certain amount of education and the learning of skills, has survived in some countries of the world until today, although craft has undergone deep structural changes during the era of the Industrial Revolution in which mass production of goods of the industry has limited craft to areas of life which large scale industry could not satisfy - due to its modes of functioning - or in which mass-produced goods would not meet the preferences of potential buyers. Moreover, as an outcome of these changes, craftspeople increasingly make use of semi-finished components or materials today, and accomplish and adapt such a kind of ware to their customers' requirements or demands and, if necessary, to the environments of their customers, taking it in hand, in case fitting-work is needed, and thus augment what the industry already had produced - through participating in a certain division of labour between industry and craft.
Work branches of craft
For getting an overview of the work branches, see:
Handicraft: The "traditional" main sector of craft
The Arts and Crafts Movement
The term crafts is often used to describe the family of artistic practices within the family decorative arts that traditionally are defined by their relationship to functional or utilitarian products (such as sculptural forms in the vessel tradition) or by their use of such natural media as wood, clay, glass, textiles, and metal.
Crafts practiced by independent artists working alone or in small groups are often referred to as studio craft.
Craft as a classification
In English, to describe something as a craft is to describe it as lying somewhere between an art (which relies on talent) and a science (which relies on knowledge). In this sense, the English word craft is roughly equivalent to the ancient Greek term techne.
- Master craftsman
- Decorative art
- Arts and Crafts Movement
- American Craft Council
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Craft — bezeichnet: Craft (Bischof), auch „Krafto“, deutscher Bischof des Frühmittelalters die Craft Helmets, deutscher Hersteller von Motorradhelmen mit Sitz in Münster Craft (Band), schwedische Black Metal Band Craft of Scandinavia, schwedischer… … Deutsch Wikipedia
Craft — (kr[.a]ft), n. [AS. cr[ae]ft strength, skill, art, cunning; akin to OS., G., Sw., & Dan. kraft strength, D. kracht, Icel. kraptr; perh. originally, a drawing together, stretching, from the root of E. cramp.] 1. Strength; might; secret power. [Obs … The Collaborative International Dictionary of English
craft´i|ly — craft|y «KRAF tee, KRAHF », adjective, craft|i|er, craft|i|est. 1. skillful in deceiving others; sly; tricky: »a crafty villain. The crafty fox lured the rabbit from its hole … Useful english dictionary
craft|y — «KRAF tee, KRAHF », adjective, craft|i|er, craft|i|est. 1. skillful in deceiving others; sly; tricky: »a crafty villain. The crafty fox lured the rabbit from its hole … Useful english dictionary
craft — [krɑːft ǁ kræft] noun [countable] JOBS a job or activity that takes a lot of skill, usually one in which you make things using your hands and special tools: • the blacksmith s craft • He learnt the film making craft at Pinewood studios … Financial and business terms
craft — [n1] expertise, skill ability, adeptness, adroitness, aptitude, art, artistry, cleverness, competence, cunning, dexterity, expertness, ingenuity, knack, know how*, proficiency, technique; concepts 409,706 craft [n2] deceit, scheme art, artfulness … New thesaurus
craft — [kraft, kräft] n. [ME < OE cræft, strength, power; akin to Ger kraft, strength, force (sense “skill” only in E) < IE * grep < base * ger , to twist, turn (see CRADLE): basic sense “cramping of muscles during exertion of strength”] 1. a… … English World dictionary
Craft — Craft, v. t. To play tricks; to practice artifice. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] You have crafted fair. Shak. [1913 Webster] … The Collaborative International Dictionary of English
-craft — [kraft, kräft] 〚/span> CRAFT〛 combining form the work, skill, or practice of * * * … Universalium
-craft — [kraft, kräft] [< CRAFT] combining form the work, skill, or practice of … English World dictionary
craft — index business (occupation), calling, career, contrivance, deception, device (contrivance), discretion … Law dictionary