This unisex name was first used in the 12th century as a surname created from the Old English “marten” (an animal that lives in the forest) and “leah” (wood clearing”). It’s also an update of the English name Marlee and the German Marlene. It became popular at the end of the 20th century, mostly as a girls' name. Besides being influenced by reggae superstar Bob Marley, the name gained new believers when a book (and later a movie) called “Marley and Me”—a loving account of life with a mischievous Labrador—was published in 2008.
Wondering who else shares this name? Check out these well known people who made this baby name famous.
- Bob MarleyMusician
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Source: Social Security Administration
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