While discussing replication with Jr. DBAs at work, I realize some of them have not experienced replication feature of SQL SERVER. Following is quick reference of replication keywords I created for easy conversation.
The publisher is the source database where replication begins. It makes data available for replication.
The subscriber is the destination database where replication ends. It either receives a snapshot of all the published data or applies transactions that have been replicated to itself.
The distributor is the intermediary between the publisher and subscriber. It receives published transactions or snapshots and then stores and forwards these publications to the subscribers.
The publication is the storage container for different articles. A subscriber can subscribe to an individual article or an entire publication.
An article is the data, transactions, or stored procedures that are stored within a publication. This is the actual information that is going to be replicated.
Two-phase commit is a form of replication in which modifications made to the publishing database are made at the subscription database at the same time.
MSDN : Replication
Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)