Open main menu



Etymology 1Edit

From Old French aspre (modern âpre), from Latin asper (rough).

Alternative formsEdit


asper (comparative more asper, superlative most asper)

  1. Rough or harsh; severe, stern, serious.
    • Francis Bacon
      An asper sound.


asper (uncountable)

  1. (phonetics) Rough breathing; a mark (#) indicating that part of a word is aspirated, or pronounced with h before it.

Etymology 2Edit

Middle English, from Middle French aspre or Italian aspro, both from Ancient Greek ἄσπρον (áspron), from neuter of ἄσπρος (áspros, white), from Latin asper (rough, newly minted)

Alternative formsEdit


asper (plural aspers)

  1. (historical) Any one of several small coins, circulated around the eastern Mediterranean area from the 12th to 17th centuries.




Probably from the Proto-Indo-European root *h₂esp- (to cut), also present in Ancient Greek ἀσπίς (aspís) and Hittite [script needed] (ḫasp-).



asper (feminine aspera, neuter asperum, comparative asperior, superlative asperrimus, adverb asperē); first/second-declension adjective (nominative masculine singular in -er)

  1. rough, uneven, coarse
  2. unrefined, rude
  3. sharp, newly minted


First/second-declension adjective (nominative masculine singular in -er).

Number Singular Plural
Case / Gender Masculine Feminine Neuter Masculine Feminine Neuter
Nominative asper aspera asperum asperī asperae aspera
Genitive asperī asperae asperī asperōrum asperārum asperōrum
Dative asperō asperō asperīs
Accusative asperum asperam asperum asperōs asperās aspera
Ablative asperō asperā asperō asperīs
Vocative asper aspera asperum asperī asperae aspera

Derived termsEdit


  • Albanian: ashpër
  • Aromanian: ascuru
  • Asturian: aspru, ásperu
  • Catalan: aspre
  • French: âpre
  • Galician: áspero


  • asper in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • asper in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • asper in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire Illustré Latin-Français, Hachette
  • Carl Meissner; Henry William Auden (1894) Latin Phrase-Book[1], London: Macmillan and Co.
    • (ambiguous) rough and hilly ground: loca aspera et montuosa (Planc. 9. 22)
  • asper in Harry Thurston Peck, editor (1898) Harper's Dictionary of Classical Antiquities, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • asper in William Smith, editor (1848) A Dictionary of Greek Biography and Mythology, London: John Murray


Norwegian BokmålEdit


asper m or f

  1. indefinite plural of asp