Definition of cockroach in English:



  • A beetle-like scavenging insect with long antennae and legs. Several tropical kinds have become established worldwide as household pests.

    • ‘Removing the space prevents cockroaches and other pests from residing in the dark corners.’
    • ‘Houseflies, mosquitoes and cockroaches are identified as the most common domestic insect pests.’
    • ‘For example, if you put your hand in front of a cockroach, the insect will immediately turn and run in the opposite direction.’
    • ‘Vermin, mostly rodents and cockroaches, climbed out of the flooded gutters to seek refuge inside houses.’
    • ‘The ants and the cockroaches have also begun to return; no longer is it safe to leave the cat food out on the back step.’


Early 17th century (as cacaroch): from Spanish cucaracha. The spelling change was due to association with cock and roach.