Family Name for Sale: Clover

If you’ve stalk me for long enough through all the various comments I’ve made on different name sites, you may now be well aware that I have three younger siblings. You may also be aware that for my youngest sister my parents were intending on calling her Clover, suggested by me, until they chickened out at the last moment and opted for a Top 10 pick instead.

In this series of posts about names from my own family we’ve already covered Edna, Carole, Kennedy, Teagan and Clotilde; the latter was the first and outlines the problem I face in more detail but, suffice to say, my family hate the idea of using family names. These posts, therefore, chart some of the names from my family which I, alas, are unable to use.

So technically speaking, this name has yet to be used in our family, so she’s not a family name, but when my sister arrived she was known almost exclusively as Baby Clover so even though she doesn’t bear the name, Clover does belong to my littlest sister. This is all rather annoying because when I suggested it as a 9 year-old I loved the name, and to this day I still do.

It becomes apparent only when I looked up the rankings at the start of writing this post that we were clearly ahead of the trend as my sister was born in 2003, the year before Clover ranked. I was clearly a rather forward-thinking child.

  2003 2004 2005 2006
Rank n/a 4598 3970 3116
Births n/a 3 4 6
  2007 2008 2009 2010
Rank 2895 2022 2148 1993
Births 7 12 11 13
However, as you can see, Clover appears to be gaining in terms of popularity, albeit not as rapidly as Jenson, which we covered earlier on in the week. She could stall and remain forever in the bottom part of the list with only a handful of uses each year, equally she coould be on her way to the Top 1000 in the coming years. I think it’s still a bit too early to tell either way.
A Clover is a wild flower. which ultimately comes from the Old English word clafre. It’s also the name of a popular brand of margarine in the UK. Which raises a wry smile for me, because I replaced Clover as my favourtie floral name with Flora, another brand of margarine in the UK. A tagline the Clover brand used for a while was We all love Clover (it’s the way that it’s churned), which is considered by some to be part of one of the worst adverts ever aired, with it being described as disturbing. It might be, but it’d be a fun thing to sing your little one to sleep with. Clover first hit shelves in the early1980s.
The best-known use of the name is when it’s associated with the number four, as a 4-leaf clover is one of the many symbols associated with luck. According to legend each leaf represents one thing:
1st: faith
2nd: hope
3rd: love
4th: luck
In May 2009, a Japanese man by the name of Shiego Obara discovered a clover with 56 leaves. All I can say is that he must be rolling in luck.
I think Clover’s niche could be the one left behind by Heather, and currently being filled by names such as Poppy, Lily and even Juniper to a certain extent. Floral names do have a reasonably large presence in England&Wales; Jasmine, Lily, Holly and Poppy are all Top 50. Meanwhile, Heather currently sits at #559 with 71 births.
And unlike the recently covered Indigo, Clover isn’t exactly outlandish. She has a familiar sound to a handful of already popular names, such as Piper, and the legend of the four-leaf clover is known by most. Perhaps now is the time Clover starts to become more established as a name. I’d certainly love to spot a couple more appearing in playgrounds in the coming years.
Categories: Family names | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “Family Name for Sale: Clover

  1. Clover is adorable; it seems like such a sweet yet spunky name.

    I might be biased, because when I was a little girl, I once found a four-leafed clover! And I wished on it, and my wish came true, and it changed my life (although obviously I didn’t know that would happen when I wished).

    So to me it seems a rather magical name. I’d love to see more Clovers roving all over.


  2. Awkward Turtle

    I tihnk Clover is quite sweet and whimsical, but still spunky. That’s not a bad combination!


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