1. Nautical.
    1. the upward curve at the foot of a square sail.
    2. (loosely) a convexity given to any of the edges of a sail; round.
  2. hair combed up from the forehead or temples in a roll or high curve.

verb (used with object)

  1. to clip or cut off (the mane of a horse); hog.
  2. to comb (hair) into a roach.


  1. arched convexly, as the back of certain breeds of dog, such as the whippet

noun plural roaches or roach

  1. a European freshwater cyprinid food fish, Rutilus rutilus, having a deep compressed body and reddish ventral and tail fins
  2. any of various similar fishes


  1. short for cockroach
  2. slang the butt of a cannabis cigarette

noun nautical

  1. the amount by which the leech of a fore-and-aft sail projects beyond an imaginary straight line between the clew and the head
  2. the curve at the foot of a square sail


  1. Hal, full name Harald Eugene Roach . 1892–1992, US film producer, whose company produced numerous comedy films in the 1920s and 1930s, including those featuring Harold Lloyd and Laurel and Hardy

shortened form of cockroach, 1837, on mistaken notion that it was a compound. In contemporary writing said to be from a polite desire to avoid the sexual connotation in the first syllable. Meaning “butt of a marijuana cigarette” is first recorded 1938, perhaps from resemblance to the insect, but perhaps a different word entirely.


small freshwater fish, c.1200, from Old French roche (13c.), of uncertain origin, perhaps from a Germanic source. Applied to similar-looking fish in North America.

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