Definition of engine in English:

engine

Syllabification: en·gine
Pronunciation: /ˈenjən
 
/

noun

1A machine with moving parts that converts power into motion.
More example sentences
  • At the time, the big advantage of petrol engines over steamed powered cars was that they required only one kind of fuel, instead of a combination of coal and water.
  • The device will disable the ignition of a car or stop its engine while in motion.
  • Diesel-powered submarines use combustion engines to provide power and charge the sub's batteries.
Synonyms
motor, machine, mechanism; jet, turbojet, turboprop, turbofan, turbine, generator
1.1A thing that is the agent or instrument of a particular process: exports used to be the engine of growth
More example sentences
  • Private initiative will provide the engine for growth and will be the major force in developing the economy.
  • The report said urbanisation and the second stage of industrialisation are the two new growth engines.
  • Cities are engines of growth and cultural expansion and finding answers to the question of how cities can remain viable in the future is one of the most urgent challenges world-wide.
Synonyms
cause, agent, instrument, originator, initiator, generator
2A railroad locomotive.
More example sentences
  • And a final word… In about three years it will be time to mark the bi-centenary of the first successful use of a steam railway engine anywhere in the world.
  • The all-time roster of steam locomotives totalled just 60 engines, less than half of which were acquired new.
  • Three engines and 11 boxcars derailed near the 3800 block of Croton Avenue.
2.1 short for fire engine.
More example sentences
  • The fire brigade was out in force with an emergency tender, a high-rise platform engine and two regular fire engines.
  • The introduction of the new engine was instrumental in keeping the Sligo fire service moving forward.
  • The crew from the Engine arrived and stayed for about three and a half hours while crews worked to extinguish the fire and overhaul the building contents
2.2 historical A mechanical device or instrument, especially one used in warfare: a siege engine
More example sentences
  • After all, medieval warfare depended on siege engines which were nothing more than big levers to breach castle walls!
  • Light siege engines and field artillery bulked behind the infantry, crews crouched at their weapons.
  • Their work was covered by over a hundred siege engines that hurled not only stones but also pots filled with various flammable substances.
Synonyms

Origin

Middle English (formerly also as ingine): from Old French engin, from Latin ingenium 'talent, device', from in- 'in' + gignere 'beget'; compare with ingenious. The original sense was 'ingenuity, cunning' (surviving in Scots as ingine), hence 'the product of ingenuity, a plot or snare', also 'tool, weapon', later specifically denoting a large mechanical weapon; whence a machine (mid 17th century), used commonly later in combinations such as steam engine, internal combustion engine.

Derivatives

engined

adjective
[in combination]: a twin-engined helicopter

engineless

adjective
More example sentences
  • I will soon be able to buy an engineless accommodation barge to tow behind in traditional waterways fashion.
  • At its peak altitude, the engineless plane will separate from its booster before gliding to earth under radio control to a parachute landing.
  • Imagine an engineless boat with no sails on a full moon night in a rough sea.

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