An attribute is a feature of data or a database.
For example, a common attribute of data used in business is the monetary denominator—the euro, dollar, yuan, etc. Attributes such as monetary denominators help separate data into discrete groupings within a database and assure that each set of attribute data functions within defined rules, such as adding and subtracting only data with the same attributes.
Databases have attributes as well—fields, tables, etc. with distinct characteristics that help facilitate queries and other vital functions of database management.
http://www.toolingu.com/definition-900170-13850-attribute-data.html http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/A/attribute.html http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attribute_%28computing%29