: a small venomous snake of Egypt usually held to be a cobra (Naja haje)
Origin of ASP
Middle English aspis, from Latin, from Greek
First Known Use: 14th century
Anglicized form of aspis, the name used in classical antiquity for a venomous snake, probably the Egyptian cobra (Naja haje). The asp was the symbol of royalty in Egypt, and its bite was used for the execution of criminals in Greco-Roman times. Cleopatra is said to have killed herself with an asp.