Cleo, one of the few girls' names to boast the cool-yet-lively o ending, is of course short for Cleopatra, the name of one of the most powerful women in history.
Cleo was most popular in the early decades of the twentieth century--when it was also used for boys. The opening of the Egyptian tombs along with the 1917 silent film starring Theda Bara popularized a range of now-obscure Cleopatra diminutives, including Cleora, and Cleola.
A distinguished bearer is the British jazz singer Cleo Laine, and there have been Cleos on two TV dramas: ER and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.
Maybe the fact that Cleo was recently chosen by Friends' David Schwimmer will ignite a welcome revival.
Sound-alike Clio is the name of the ancient Greek mythological muse of history and heroic poetry, one that is rich with modern charm and would also make an intriguing choice,
Lists containing Cleo:
- Bad Girls
- The O Names
- Nicknames for Girls
- Celebrity Baby Names Master List
- 100+ Classic Girls’ Names — below the Top 1000