SPECIFICATION (from Med. Lat. specificatio, specificare, to enumerate or mention in detail), any detailed statement, especially one on which an estimate or plan is based, as the specification of a builder or architect (see BUILDING). In patent law a specification is a description of an invention. An application for a patent must be accompanied by a specification, either provisional or complete. If a complete specification does not accompany the application, it must be forwarded usually within six months of the date of application, otherwise the application is deemed to be abandoned. A provisional specification declares the nature of the invention in general terms, while a complete specification describes the invention in detail, and shows the manner in which it is to be carried out (see further PATENTS).
In the civil law (see ACCESSION) specification was the working up of a thing into a new product; for example, the making of bread from grain. The effect of specification was that the original owner lost his title in favour of the creator of the new product, but had an action for the value of the materials.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)