A Brief History of Engineering and the Engineer


A brief history of engineering, engineer, basic information about engineers. A quick overview for anyone who is interested in learning more! 

Engineers are people who work to solve problems in their community and the world at large by designing systems that make things like public transportation or skyscrapers possible (Sieczkowski). People probably know that they use math to help them design these complex structures. But I may not know how much education it takes to become an engineer! For example if you want to be a civil engineer you would need at least four years for university training after secondary school including two-year professional (known as diploma) before starting full-time work (Engineering Council, UK).

A few years ago, engineers would have to go through a formal apprenticeship to learn their trade. But now there are colleges and universities that offer engineering programs.

A few degrees include:

  • Civil Engineering
  • Computer Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering

It takes time and effort for someone to become an engineer. Because they need the right knowledge in order to solve problems. In many cases, it is impossible for one person or department alone to make these complex designs possible. So engineers often collaborate with other experts from different areas of study (Sieczkowski). A historian once said “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand enough about it!”

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It’s no secret that engineers are always trying to pave new roads.

From ancient Rome, where architects constructed aqueducts to modern times, with NASA developing rockets capable of landing on Mars it is evident how each era has contributed something unique in building our future world. But what about those who construct these marvels? Who are they? What do they look like? Do you know them at all? That brings us back to the question: “Who exactly are Engineers?” So let’s explore a brief history of engineering and its pioneers throughout time!

First engineer

The first engineer was likely an early caveman whose tools were made from stone or animal. However, as civilizations began to form, the need for more advanced tools led us into a new era of engineering. In ancient Greece, skilled craftsmen and artisans were responsible for building temples and statues that would be used in everyday life as well as worship services.

Master builder

The word “architect” is derived from Greek meaning “master builder”. But when it came down to constructing buildings or monuments architects worked with engineers! A great example of this was in 280 BC when Eratosthenes calculated Earth’s circumference using primitive instruments such as a rod called gnomon. This cast shadows on sundials during sunlight hours.

Londres Tower

In medieval Europe, castles dotted landscapes across many regions including Wales and Scotland where structures not only served political purposes. But also military ones too. Often, engineers and architects came together to construct these castles and fortifications. A great example of this was in the early 13th century when French castle architect Savari de Mauléon built a stone tower called Londres Tower at Dover Castle. It is still standing today!

In modern times we have witnessed engineering take on many different forms from space exploration to underwater expeditions. In fact it’s safe to say that even though an invention may not be possible with current technology advancement in engineering continues every day as new discoveries are made daily around the globe! So if you ever meet an engineer or want to learn more about them yourself do some research online for a brief history of their lives throughout time starting from ancient Greece all the way up until present day.

The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco

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