engine

noun
en·​gine | \ ˈen-jən \

Definition of engine

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 obsolete

a : ingenuity
b : evil contrivance : wile
2a : something used to effect a purpose : agent, instrument mournful and terrible engine of horror and of crime— E. A. Poe
b : something that produces a particular and usually desirable result engines of economic growth
3a : a mechanical tool: such as
(1) : an instrument or machine of war
(2) obsolete : a torture implement
b : machinery
c : any of various mechanical appliances often used in combination fire engine
4 : a machine for converting any of various forms of energy into mechanical force and motion also : a mechanism or object that serves as an energy source black holes may be the engines for quasars
5 : a railroad locomotive
6 : computer software that performs a fundamental function especially of a larger program

engine

verb
engined; engining

Definition of engine (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to equip with engines

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Other Words from engine

Noun

engineless adjective

Synonyms for engine

Synonyms: Noun

machine, motor

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Examples of engine in a Sentence

Noun

The car has a four-cylinder engine. tanks, planes, and other engines of war The tax cut could be an engine of economic growth.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Some have already raised concerns about potential antitrust and privacy violations, showing more willingness than Republicans to regulate an industry viewed as an engine of economic growth. Casey Newton, The Verge, "How Kevin Hart tweeted himself out of a job hosting the Oscars," 8 Dec. 2018 Betty, in her Serpents jacket, busts something in the engine of one of the parked cars outside the fight. Jessica Macleish, Teen Vogue, ""Riverdale" Recap Season 3 Episode 5: Can Archie Escape From a Teenage Fight Club?!," 15 Nov. 2018 These controls helped prevent floods and maintain the functionality of the Mississippi as an economic engine that powers dozens of cities along its course, from St. Louis to Memphis to Baton Rouge to, most of all, New Orleans. Nate Berg, Curbed, "Can engineering save Louisiana’s coastline?," 7 Nov. 2018 Think of it this way: If advocacy is the engine of change, money is the fuel that sustains and propels advocacy campaigns. Linda Davis Taylor, SELF, "How to Use Money as an Extension of Your Political Voice," 6 Nov. 2018 Florida State ultimately prevailed in the last BCS championship game, but the Seminoles had no answer for Mason, the engine of a lethal Tigers ground game. Ben Ladner, SI.com, "The 10 Best National Championship Game Performances of the BCS Era," 13 July 2018 Rising prices would cut into Americans’ purchasing power, which has remained an engine of growth in the recovery from the great recession. New York Times, "Trade War With China in Aisle 12," 12 July 2018 The glider truck concept began so the engines of relatively new trucks that had been involved in accidents could be transferred to new truck bodies. Eric Lipton, BostonGlobe.com, "‘Super polluting’ trucks receive loophole on Pruitt’s last day," 7 July 2018 The ad opens with an engine's vroom and a long, panning shot of hairy legs. Joshua Hafner, ajc, "It’s likely a first: Women’s razor ad actually shows hairy legs (and other body parts)," 3 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Why can't engine manufacturers come up with an engine similar to what is on the more fuel-efficient aircraft — for example, producing a version of the engine that is on a 787 or a 777 — to fit and safely propel the 747? John Cox, USA TODAY, "Ask the Captain: Can the 747 be saved?," 29 Oct. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'engine.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of engine

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1841, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for engine

Noun

Middle English engin, from Anglo-French, from Latin ingenium natural disposition, talent, from in- + gignere to beget — more at kin

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Statistics for engine

Last Updated

20 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for engine

The first known use of engine was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for engine

engine

noun

English Language Learners Definition of engine

: a machine that changes energy (such as heat from burning fuel) into mechanical motion

: the vehicle that pulls a train

: something that is used for a particular purpose

engine

noun
en·​gine | \ ˈen-jən \

Kids Definition of engine

1 : a mechanical tool or device tanks, planes, and other engines of war
2 : a machine for driving or operating something especially by using the energy of steam, gasoline, or oil

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More from Merriam-Webster on engine

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for engine

Spanish Central: Translation of engine

Nglish: Translation of engine for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of engine for Arabic Speakers

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