I.e. an abstract representation of a kind of project that can be instantiated into a concrete customized Maven project.
An archetype knows which files will be part of the instantiated project and which properties to fill to properly customize the project.
Each archetype defines a set of common properties:
The minimal content of the JAR file is:
. |-- META-INF | `-- maven | `-- archetype-metadata.xml  `-- archetype-resources |-- ...  `-- pom.xml 
Note: The common properties should be renamed to $target.groupId, ... to avoid name clash.