(1) Generally, the process during a lawsuit when one party finds out the details and evidence that the other party has in its prosecution or defense of the case. Typically this process occurs before trial and is designed to (a) have both parties be prepared to make and defend a case fully and completely in front of a jury, and (b) potentially create a possible settlement of the matter without the need for trial as each party can assess its ability to win the case and whether a trial would be necessary in place of a settlement. (2) (A) intern. law. The act of finding an unknown country. 2. The nations of Europe adopted the principle, that the discovery of any part of America gave title to the government by whose subjects, or by whose authority it was made, against all European governments. This title was to be consummated by possession. 8 Wheat. 543. (B) practice, pleading. The act of disclosing or revealing by a defendant, in his answer to a bill filed against him in a court of equity. (C) rights. The patent laws of the United States use this word as synonymous with invention or improvement of July 4, 1836, s. 6.