encroach - definition and synonyms

verb [intransitive] 

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present tense
present participleencroaching
past tenseencroached
past participleencroached
  1. 1
    to gradually take something such as power or authority from someone else
    encroach on/upon:

    The federal government is encroaching on a state issue.

  2. 2
    to cover more land gradually
    encroach on/upon:

    Housing developments continue to encroach on wildlife habitats.

     Synonyms and related words
  3. 3
    to gradually reduce the amount of time that someone has available to do what they want to do
    encroach on/upon:

    I didn’t want work to encroach any more on my spare time.

derived word


noun [countable/uncountable]