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  1. any of numerous cosmopolitan snakes of the family Elapidae, having permanently erect fangs in the front of the upper jaw and including the New World coral snakes, the cobras, and most Australian snakes.
  1. belonging or pertaining to the Elapidae.

Origin of elapid

1880–85; < New Latin Elapidae, equivalent to Elap- (stem of Elaps name of genus ≪ Greek éllops a sea-fish) + -idae -id2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for elapid

Historical Examples

  • Male combat in American colubrid snakes with remarks on combat in other colubrid and elapid snakes.

    Natural History of Cottonmouth Moccasin, Agkistrodon piscovorus (Reptilia)

    Ray D. Burkett

British Dictionary definitions for elapid


  1. any venomous snake of the mostly tropical family Elapidae, having fixed poison fangs at the front of the upper jaw and including the cobras, coral snakes, and mambas
  1. of, relating to, or belonging to the Elapidae

Word Origin

C19: from New Latin Elapidae, from Medieval Greek elaps, elops a fish, sea serpent; perhaps related to Greek lepis scale
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012