When Clementine Gets Popular

A wonderfully orange Clementine, from publicdomainpictures.net

It’s a quick post today, but one I’ve been chewing (ha ha) for awhile now. Not that I really would be, since I don’t like oranges.

Clementine is a name I’m seeing everywhere now. Part of me is glad to see an under-used classic finally see an increase uptake, but now I feel the need to search out an alternative. The problem? There’s problems with all the names I come up with as potentials, which keeps knocking me back into square one.

Let’s start with Clemastine. Pretty, and only a few letters different from Clementine. She’s also the name of an anti-histamine, but then again, Clementine is the name of an orange. When does one draw the line with what foodstuffs we’re willing to name our offspring after, and ones that just don’t seem like they’ll work. That said, naming your child after a drug is slightly dodgey ground, regardless, no matter how pretty the word may be. Otherwise we’d all be naming our kids Tamiflu, or Tami for short.

Slightly off-the-beaten track is Clemancy, the name of two areas in two different parts of France. Only a syllable altered in this case, and she’s not far removed from Clemency either, so why not just use Clemency, a word one could define as meaning merciful?. 

Another slightly out-there option could be Clarinet, which is the name of a woodwind instrument, but not to be confused with Claret, a French red wine. Both lovely words to say, but heavily associated with their objects. Then again, Clementine is also strongly associated with a round, orange thing but it’s never really done her any harm. I just can’t see people who love Clementine embracing either name, it just doesn’t seem like they’d work well.

Talking of out there, one could potential consider Célestine as an option. She’s a slight elaboration of Celeste, which comes from Latin and means of the sky/heavenly. She’s probably the best option I’ve thought of, and one with the least problems.

The final so-called plausible option is Clandestine, which my brother’s dictionary defines as kept secret. I don’t think I know a single mamma-to-be who has keep their pregnancy secret, but it does happen. Then it would work, but that’s only a small minority of cases.

Let’s quickly finish with a handful of other names of other varieties of oranges:


Cara (cara)





Categories: Girl Names | 11 Comments

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11 thoughts on “When Clementine Gets Popular

  1. Awkward Turtle

    I like Clemency the most out of those, although Clarinet could be fun.


  2. namemuststay

    Might be where Cleisty comes out to shine…I think Clara, though, could be an alternative that would get a jump from Clementine’s popularity and the old-fashioned names trend, too.


    • Clara is really starting to pick up in popularity now, she really reminds me of the name Alice – understated classic. I caught a cookery show the other day which featured Clarissa Dickson-Wright – once famous as one of the two fat ladies, I think it’s safe to say that association will no longer cause issues and thus she too could really get popular as well.


  3. I don’t think I like any of the names as much as Clementine (is it really that popular yet?)

    I must say, I never associate it with the fruit, but I just see mandarins sold as mandarins.


    • namemuststay

      It must be a very Britain-specific name at the moment, it’s fringe over here for sure…I can understand, though – they had Clementine Churchill to be inspired by!


      • True – I’d say here Clementine isn’t popular or fringe; it’s kind of hipster I guess. You do see it around in certain areas, but it’s by no means widespread.


  4. I’m in the US so Clementine is still pretty underused. I do expect it to rise in the next few years so I hope I have another girl/ can convince my husband before then! It’s such a great name with mostly pleasant (for me) connotations.


    • I do really believe that all the slightly aged floral names are coming back big this decade. We’ve already had Lily and Rose resurgence, and names such as Clementine, Flora and Pearl could easily be next.


  5. Pingback: About A Name: Clemency « Want My Advice?

  6. Pingback: When Penelope Gets Popular « Mer de Noms

  7. Pingback: About A Name: Clemency « The Name Station

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