Information on the cameo
An asp is a venomous snake related to the cobra and found in many regions of Africa, including Egypt. Ancient historians believed that Cleopatra committed suicide by letting an asp bite her on the breast after learning that her lover Marc Antony had also committed suicide after losing the Battle of Actium. It is said that this asp was concealed in a basket of figs that was brought to her by a rustic, and, finding it after eating a few figs, she held out her arm for it to bite.
As recently as 2010, however, German historian Christoph Schaefer and toxicologist Dietrich Mebs may have discovered that Cleopatra was not bitten by an asp and instead ingested a poison cocktail mixed of hemlock, wolfsbane and opium.
Appearance in the rap battle
The asp appeared at the start of Cleopatra's first verse, clutched in her hand. It was then mentioned by Marilyn Monroe's second verse during the line, "I got an ass that won't quit! You got an asp and got bit on the tit!"
- Cleopatra's asp is the first living animal cameo.
- Although an average asp can grow to be over 25 inches long, the one in the battle is much smaller than the one believed to have killed Cleopatra.