Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Marley

Marley is the transferred use of a long-established English surname of Anglo-Saxon origins. Marley was derived from a place name located in several different areas of England. The Olde English elements “mearth” meaning “marten” plus “lēah” meaning “wood clearing” gave birth to the name Marley. A marten is a short-legged, bushy-tailed animal that lives in northern forests and trees. There are several places called Marley in England (e.g., Devon, Kent and West Yorkshire). Alternately, some etymologies believe that Marley is derived from a nickname, from the Olde English word “myrig” meaning “pleasant”. As a surname, Marley dates back to the 12th century. The usage of Marley as a given name (primarily female) began in the United States at the end of the 20th century and was most likely influenced by the reggae musician and Jamaican singer Bob Marley (1945-1981). Later Marley’s popularity as a given name was cemented by a popular book-turned-Hollywood-film called “Marley & Me” (2008). Marley is also sometimes considered a pet form of the name Marlene.

All About the Baby Name – Marley

Personality

OF THE BOY NAME MARLEY

The number 11 is a Master Number, and embodies heightened traits of the Two. This personality is on a life journey to find spiritual truth. They are extremely idealistic and intuitive. Elevens have a rare and exceptional spiritual energy that brings a sense of obligation to illuminate the world around them. It's a very powerful responsibility, but these people have far more potential than they know. It's important that they surrender to higher ideals. They have the capacity to see the bigger picture, and they possess the skills to inspire others spiritually. Elevens have strong diplomatic skills and can become great peacemakers. Master numbers can be both a blessing and a curse, as they walk the fine line between greatness and the potential for self-destruction.

Popularity

OF THE BOY NAME MARLEY

Marley became officially unisex for the first time when the name appeared on the American male naming charts in 2008. The name’s appearance as a masculine name choice coincided with the popularity of the tear-jerking dog movie “Marley & Me”. However, the name had already been in existence as a female name for almost 15 years prior. Marley would not last long on the male charts – in fact he just fell off the Top 1000 list in 2011. American parents are much more likely to bestow Marley on their baby girls than boys and so the name has probably lost its appeal as a masculine name for this reason. Not to mention that feminized spelling variations have also come into circulation: Marlee, Marlie and, our personal favorite, Marleigh. At this point, Marley is a boy’s name reserved for the ultra-reggae-music-loving parents who are more interested in paying homage to Bob Marley than to a loveable yellow Labrador retriever.

Quick Facts

ON MARLEY

GENDER:

Boy

ORIGIN:

English

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

2

RANKING POPULARITY:

876

PRONUNCIATION:

MAHR-lee

SIMPLE MEANING:

Marten wood clearing, Pleasant

Characteristics

OF MARLEY

Inspirational

Highly Intuitive

Spiritual Teacher

Extremely Bright

Uplifting

Truth-seeker

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Marley

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME MARLEY

We cannot find any significant literary characters by the name of Marley

Popular Songs

ON MARLEY

Marley Medley - Guava Jelly/This Train
a song by Sublime

Famous People

NAMED MARLEY

Marley Shelton (actress)
Marley Shelton (actress)
Marley Shelton (actress)

Children of Famous People

NAMED MARLEY

We cannot find any children of famous people with the first name Marley

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME MARLEY

We cannot find any historically significant people with the first name Marley