For ‘tis the sport to have the enginer Hoist with his own petar;

Ah, language! You are so changeable – so slippery sometimes.
I mean, here’s the source for a saying we hear everyday but today we say “Hoisted with his own petard.” And when and how do these tiny shifts happen?

Also? We have here an editorial choice between “engineer” and “enginer” – which may be a matter of spelling and pronunciation on one hand but also a matter of meaning on another. Without consistent spelling at the time when Shakespeare’s plays were printed, we can never really know for sure if Shakespeare meant “engineer” and “enginer” now. I know what an engineer is – and have no idea what an enginer is. Which is why, if I were editing, I might just go with the word more people have a sense of the meaning of. But – apparently enginer might have metaphorical connections, military connections to the ghost being called a pioneer. (Often printed as PIONER) See – we have these tricky extra e’s that either obscure meaning or enhance it.
And with language, we are always hoist with our own petar. Language will get us back every time we think we’ve built it flawlessly.


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