any engine employing the rectilinear motion of one or more pistons in cylinders.
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Also called displacement engine, piston engine.
Origin of reciprocating engine
First recorded in 1815–25
Words nearby reciprocating engine
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020
British Dictionary definitions for reciprocating engine
an engine in which one or more pistons move backwards and forwards inside a cylinder or cylinders