- to advance beyond proper, established, or usual limits; make gradual inroads: A dictatorship of the majority is encroaching on the rights of the individual.
- to trespass upon the property, domain, or rights of another, especially stealthily or by gradual advances.
Origin of encroach
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for encroach
In the east, the Chinese army continues periodically to encroach on Indian territory.Farewell to Manmohan Singh, India’s Puppet Prime Minister
January 5, 2014
Any attempt to encroach on it, even by an iota, will ultimately lead to our enslavement by a federal tyranny.Gun-Control Foes Misunderstand the Intent of the Second Amendment
December 18, 2012
How does this symbolize constraints on girls and women, and encroach on our right to be simply as we are, at any given moment?Ashley Judd Slaps Media in the Face for Speculation Over Her ‘Puffy’ Appearance
April 9, 2012
He got really mad when they started to encroach on his personal life.Why Manny Ramirez Hates Fans
March 9, 2009
She thanks you for your indulgence, on which she will not encroach.Tales And Novels, Volume 8 (of 10)
The poor fellows have had enough of it; I must not encroach on the entire holiday.Tom Burke Of "Ours", Volume I (of II)
Charles James Lever
But let us proceed quietly, and not encroach upon future events.The Memoires of Casanova, Complete
Jacques Casanova de Seingalt
He made no attempt to encroach upon the sovereignty of Mary.The Reign of Mary Tudor
W. Llewelyn Williams.
And now I will encroach no longer on your time or good nature, Richard.The History of Sir Richard Calmady
- (often foll by on or upon) to intrude gradually, stealthily, or insidiously upon the rights, property, etc, of another
- to advance beyond the usual or proper limits
Word Origin and History for encroach
early 14c., "acquire, get," from Old French encrochier "seize, fasten on, hang on (to), cling (to); hang up, suspend," literally "to catch with a hook," from en- "in" (see en- (1)) + croc "hook," from Old Norse krokr "hook" (see crook). Meaning "seize wrongfully" is from c.1400. Sense of "trespass" is first recorded 1530s. Related: Encroached; encroaches; encroaching.