poach

1 [pohch]
verb (used without object)
1.
to trespass, especially on another's game preserve, in order to steal animals or to hunt.
2.
to take game or fish illegally.
3.
(of land) to become broken up or slushy by being trampled.
4.
(in tennis, squash, handball, etc.) to play a ball hit into the territory of one's partner that is properly the partner's ball to play.
5.
Informal. to cheat in a game or contest.
verb (used with object)
6.
to trespass on (private property), especially in order to hunt or fish.
7.
to steal (game or fish) from another's property.
8.
to take without permission and use as one's own: to poach ideas; a staff poached from other companies.
9.
to break or tear up by trampling.
10.
to mix with water and reduce to a uniform consistency, as clay.

Origin:
1520–30; earlier: to shove, thrust < Middle French pocher to gouge < Germanic; akin to poke1

poachable, adjective
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poach

2 [pohch]
verb (used with object)
to cook (eggs, fish, fruits, etc.) in a hot liquid that is kept just below the boiling point.

Origin:
1350–1400; Middle English poche < Middle French pocher literally, to bag (the yolk inside the white), derivative of poche bag (French poche pocket) < Middle Dutch poke poke2

poachable, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
poach1 (pəʊtʃ)
 
vb
1.  to catch (game, fish, etc) illegally by trespassing on private property
2.  to encroach on or usurp (another person's rights, duties, etc) or steal (an idea, employee, etc)
3.  tennis, badminton to take or play (shots that should belong to one's partner)
4.  to break up (land) into wet muddy patches, as by riding over it, or (of land) to become broken up in this way
5.  (intr) (of the feet, shoes, etc) to sink into heavy wet ground
 
[C17: from Old French pocher, of Germanic origin; compare Middle Dutch poken to prod; see poke1]

poach2 (pəʊtʃ)
 
vb
to simmer (eggs, fish, etc) very gently in water, milk, stock, etc
 
[C15: from Old French pochier to enclose in a bag (as the yolks are enclosed by the whites); compare poke²]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

poach
"steal game," 1528, "to push, poke," from M.Fr. pocher "to thrust, poke," from O.Fr. pochier "poke out, gouge," from a Gmc. source (cf. M.H.G. puchen "to pound, beat, knock") related to poke (v.). Sense of "trespass for the sake of stealing" is first attested 1611, perhaps
via notion of "thrusting" oneself onto another's property.

poach
"cook in liquid," c.1430, from O.Fr. poché, pp. of pochier (12c.), lit. "put into a pocket" (as the white of an egg forms a pocket for the yolk), from poche "bag, pocket," from Frank. *pokka "bag," from Gmc. *puk- (see poke (n.)).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Tigers are an endangered species, rapidly being poached out of existence.
Sadly a lot of animals here are eaten to extinction or poached for their medicinal value.
Some tigers still get poached, and their habitat is still shrinking.
Sharks are poached, often to supply the main ingredient for shark-fin soup.
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