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Origin, Meaning, And History Of Cleo

Cleo is a modern name with ancient Greek and English origins. The term implies glory, fame, rumor, praise, or credit. The root of this name is the ancient Greek verb ‘kleó,’ which means ‘to make famous’ or ‘to celebrate.’ In ancient Greece, Cleo was not a given name. Instead, it was a significant element of various names. These included Kleoboulos, Kleodamos, Kleoboula, Kleodikos, and Kleodoxa.

The most well-known title of which Cleo was a part is Kleopatra, whose Latinized version is Cleopatra. Cleopatra was one of the most influential women in history. The name Kleopatra is made of ‘kleos’ meaning ‘glory and fame,’ and ‘patros,’ which implies ‘father, parent, and fatherland.’ In Greek mythology, two figures with the name stand out. The first was the daughter of mountain nymph Orithyia, and the second was the god of the North Wind, Boreas. The name Cleo is also the short form of Cleon and Cleopas.

As a used given name, Cleo became popular as a nickname for Cleopatra in contemporary times. It comes in several variations cutting across cultures. For example, in Albanian, it is Klea. The ancient Greek versions include Cleon, Cleopatra, Kleon, Kleopatra, and Kleopatros. In Biblical Greek, the term is Kleopas, while in Biblical Latin, it is Cleopas. The French variants of the name include Cléopâtre, Cléa, and Cléo.

In popular culture, there is Cleo Finch of the hit sitcom ER who first appeared in season six. Cleo Babbitt was a character in the American soap opera ‘As the World Turns’ which aired for 54 years till 2010.

The name Cleopatra came into use during the 18th century with Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra (1606). In the 1900s. Hollywood silent film actresses like Cleo Madison and Cleo Ridgely may have sparked the usage of this name. In the 21st century, however, Cleo completely superseded Cleopatra as it became one of the top-ranking names.


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Short from of Cleopatra, which means glory and fame
 C..  Ch..  Cha..  Che..  Cho..  Chu..  Cae.. 

How To Pronounce Cleo?


Famous People With The Name Cleo

  • Cleopatra Madonna “Cleo” HigginsAmerican R&B/soul/pop singer, dancer, and the lead singer of the band Cleopatra
  • Cleo MadisonAmerican silent film actress known for films like The Trey o’ Hearts
  • Cleouna “Cleo” MooreAmerican actress renowned for her role of a blonde bombshell in Hollywood films of the 1950s
  • Cleo Patra BrownAmerican blues and jazz singer honored with the NEA Jazz Masters Fellowship
  • Sheila Lynne “Cleo” OdzerAmerican writer known for books on prostitution in Thailand, the hippie culture of Goa
  • Cleo Ridgely-HorneAmerican silent film actress known for her role in the girl-detective series of the 1920s
  • Cleo PageAmerican blues guitarist known for the song ‘If you ever get lonesome’

Cleo On The Popularity Chart

Cleo has been gradually growing in popularity and saw a surge after 2010. Find more details in this chart.

Popularity Over Time

There were just 29 babies per million named Cleo in 1980. From 2013, the name started to see a sharp curve upwards and in 2021, there were 347 babies per million with the moniker.

Source: Social Security Administration

Rank Over Time

Cleo’s rank fluctuated since the 1980s but started improving from 2013 onwards. In 2019, it broke into the top 1000 names.

Source: Social Security Administration

Names With Similar Sound As Cleo

Cleo is a short and chic name. You can find similar sounding names for your child’s sibling here.

Names With Similar Meaning As Cleo

You like the name Cleo’s meaning but want to explore more names. Here are some other options for you.

Name Numerology For Cleo

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