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intr.v. en·croached, en·croach·ing, en·croach·es
1. To take another's possessions or rights gradually or stealthily: encroach on a neighbor's land.
2. To advance beyond proper or former limits: desert encroaching upon grassland.
3. Football To commit encroachment.

[Middle English encrochen, to seize illegally, from Old French encrochier, to seize : en-, in; see en-1 + croc, hook (of Germanic origin).]

en·croach′er n.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.encroaching - gradually intrusive without right or permissionencroaching - gradually intrusive without right or permission; "we moved back from the encroaching tide"; "invasive tourists"; "trespassing hunters"
intrusive - tending to intrude (especially upon privacy); "she felt her presence there was intrusive"
References in classic literature ?
However some tradition they dispers'd Among the Heathen of thir purchase got, And Fabl'd how the Serpent, whom they calld OPHION with EURYNOME, the wide- Encroaching EVE perhaps, had first the rule Of high OLYMPUS, thence by SATURN driv'n And OPS, ere yet DICTAEAN JOVE was born.
It will not be denied, that power is of an encroaching nature, and that it ought to be effectually restrained from passing the limits assigned to it.
Do not be afraid of my running into any excess, of my encroaching on your privilege of universal good-will.
On fifteen sous she found she could live without encroaching on the little stock set apart for the support of her grandmother, and she was content.
I knew what all this meant, for the servants' dinner-bell was ringing at the very moment over our heads; and as I hate such encroaching people (the Jacksons are very encroaching, I have always said so: just the sort of people to get all they can), I said to the boy directly (a great lubberly fellow of ten years old, you know, who ought to be ashamed of himself), "I'll take the boards to your father, Dick, so get you home again as fast as you can.
Fortunately none of us was injured, and when we had disentangled ourselves from the wreckage, and the lesser moon had burst again from below the horizon, we found that we were at the foot of a mighty ice-barrier, from which outcropped great patches of the granite hills which hold it from encroaching farther toward the south.
And what I have been speaking of happened to the Thurians; for the magistrates being elected according to a very high census, it was altered to a lower, and they were subdivided into more courts, but in consequence of the nobles possessing all the land, contrary to law; the state was too much of an oligarchy, which gave them an opportunity of encroaching greatly on the rest of the people; but these, after they had been well inured to war, so far got the better of their guards as to expel every one out of the country who possessed more than he ought.
Dearest William," she said, pausing, as if she could not resist the pleasure of encroaching for a second upon this wonderful world of love and confidence and romance.
Shortly after they passed the summit of the ridge which formed the boundary between the desert and the fertile country, Ska, the vulture, winging his way at a high altitude toward his aerie, caught sight of a strange new bird of gigantic proportions encroaching upon the preserves of his aerial domain.
From now on the forces of Torn were employed in repeated attacks on royalist barons, encroaching ever and ever southward until even Berkshire and Surrey and Sussex felt the weight of the iron hand of the outlaw.
You're encroaching on Princess Myakaya's special domain now.
In short, the victors seemed to have lost every trace of ferocity with their success, and appeared disposed to consult the most trifling of the wants of that engrossing people, who were daily encroaching on their rights, and reducing the Red-men of the west, from their state of proud independence to the condition of fugitives and wanderers.