See more synonyms for engineer on
  1. a person trained and skilled in the design, construction, and use of engines or machines, or in any of various branches of engineering: a mechanical engineer; a civil engineer.
  2. a person who operates or is in charge of an engine.
  3. Also called locomotive engineer. Railroads. a person who operates or is in charge of a locomotive.
  4. a member of an army, navy, or air force specially trained in engineering work.
  5. Digital Technology. a person skilled in the design and programming of computer systems: a software engineer; a web engineer.
  6. a skillful manager: a political engineer.
verb (used with object)
  1. to plan, construct, or manage as an engineer: He's engineered several big industrial projects.
  2. to design or create using the techniques or methods of engineering: The motor has been engineered to run noiselessly.
  3. to arrange, manage, or carry through by skillful or artful contrivance: He certainly engineered the election campaign beautifully.

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 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for engineered

Contemporary Examples of engineered

Historical Examples of engineered

  • She had engineered it carefully, and she was, at least in matters like these, a clever woman.

    People of Position

    Stanley Portal Hyatt

  • “Well, I must say you engineered it wonderfully,” declared Hoggan.

    The White Lie

    William Le Queux

  • Petersburg was then in the throes of a general strike—which the Wilhelmstrasse had engineered.

    The Paliser case

    Edgar Saltus

  • And now had he not engineered perhaps the fulfilment of his own prophecy?

    The Call of the Blood

    Robert Smythe Hichens

  • That it is a capitalists' war, engineered by company promoters and Jews.

    The War in South Africa

    Arthur Conan Doyle

British Dictionary definitions for engineered


  1. a person trained in any branch of the profession of engineering
  2. the originator or manager of a situation, system, etc
  3. a mechanic; person who repairs or services machines
  4. US and Canadian the driver of a railway locomotive
  5. an officer responsible for a ship's engines
  6. Informal name: sapper a member of the armed forces, esp the army, trained in engineering and construction work
verb (tr)
  1. to originate, cause, or plan in a clever or devious mannerhe engineered the minister's downfall
  2. 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 engineered



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.



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