verb (1)
\ ˈpōch How to pronounce poach (audio) \
poached; poaching; poaches

Definition of poach

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to cook in simmering liquid


verb (2)
poached; poaching; poaches

Definition of poach (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to encroach upon especially for the purpose of taking something
2 : to trespass for the purpose of stealing game also : to take game or fish illegally

transitive verb

1 : to trespass on a field poached too frequently by the amateurThe Times Literary Supplement (London)
2a : to take (game or fish) by illegal methods
b : to appropriate (something) as one's own
c : to attract (someone, such as an employee or customer) away from a competitor

Examples of poach in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb They are wearily accustomed to getting solicited by cold outreaches from recruiters and bombarded with emails and texts from competing firms trying to poach them. Jack Kelly, Forbes, 12 Apr. 2022 You’ll be compelled to take it home, to toss it with hot, buttered pasta, or to bring it up to a simmer and use it to poach an egg. New York Times, 2 May 2022 His presence in Seattle is also an excellent way for Richard to figure out that Hamilton is trying to poach Meredith. Lincee Ray, EW.com, 8 Apr. 2022 Animal traders poach their horns for commercial and medical purposes, often for use in traditional Chinese medicine. NBC News, 31 Mar. 2022 To poach boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut the chicken in half or in thirds crosswise, depending on how large the pieces are. Katie Workman, San Diego Union-Tribune, 13 Apr. 2022 In addition, Bowlsby accused ESPN in July of 2021 of encouraging other conferences - reportedly the American - to poach teams in the Big 12, so Texas and Oklahoma can move to the SEC without paying a massive buyout. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, 5 Apr. 2022 Kotick revived the Activision name, laid off much of the staff, and moved the company to Santa Monica, partly to better poach talent from the film industry. Washington Post, 17 Apr. 2020 The choice to try to poach officers from Georgia's largest city is especially noteworthy, given that Shields and Gwinn-VIllaroel both moved to LMPD in January 2021 after serving with the Atlanta Police Department for over 20 years. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, 16 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'poach.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of poach

Verb (1)

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb (2)

1611, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for poach

Verb (1)

Middle English pocchen, from Middle French pocher, from Old French poché poached, literally, bagged, from poche bag, pocket — more at pouch

Verb (2)

Middle French pocher, of Germanic origin; akin to Middle English poken to poke

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Time Traveler for poach

Time Traveler

The first known use of poach was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near poach



poached egg

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Cite this Entry

“Poach.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/poach. Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for poach


\ ˈpōch How to pronounce poach (audio) \
poached; poaching

Kids Definition of poach

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to cook slowly in liquid


poached; poaching

Kids Definition of poach (Entry 2 of 2)

: to hunt or fish unlawfully

More from Merriam-Webster on poach

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for poach

Nglish: Translation of poach for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of poach for Arabic Speakers


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