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What It Is:
: a representation of the sacred asp (Naja haje) appearing in ancient Egyptian art and especially on the headdress of rulers and serving as a symbol of sovereignty
About the Word:
The word uraeus comes from the Late Greek ouraios, a kind of snake. Egyptians believed the pharaoh's uraeus could spit fire at his enemies.
The uraeus was also the symbol of Wadjet, a goddess of lower Egypt and protector of the pharaoh. Wadjet was depicted as a cobra wrapped around a stalk of papyrus.