engineer

[en-juh-neer]

noun

verb (used with object)


Origin of engineer

1350–1400; engine + -eer; replacing Middle English engin(e)our < Anglo-French engineor Old French engigneor < Medieval Latin ingeniātor, equivalent to ingeniā(re) to design, devise (verbal derivative of ingenium; see engine) + Latin -tor -tor
Related formssub·en·gi·neer, nounun·en·gi·neered, adjectivewell-en·gi·neered, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


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British Dictionary definitions for engineer

engineer

noun

a person trained in any branch of the profession of engineering
the originator or manager of a situation, system, etc
a mechanic; person who repairs or services machines
US and Canadian the driver of a railway locomotive
an officer responsible for a ship's engines
Informal name: sapper a member of the armed forces, esp the army, trained in engineering and construction work

verb (tr)

to originate, cause, or plan in a clever or devious mannerhe engineered the minister's downfall
to design, plan, or construct as a professional engineer

Word Origin for engineer

C14: enginer, from Old French engigneor, from engignier to contrive, ultimately from Latin ingenium skill, talent; see engine
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for engineer
n.

early 14c., "constructor of military engines," from Old French engigneor, from Late Latin ingeniare (see engine); general sense of "inventor, designer" is recorded from early 15c.; civil sense, in reference to public works, is recorded from c.1600. Meaning "locomotive driver" is first attested 1832, American English. A "maker of engines" in ancient Greece was a mekhanopoios.

v.

1843 (but cf. engineering), from engineer (n.). Figurative sense of "arrange, contrive" is attested from 1864, originally in a political context. Related: Engineered.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper