Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Who (or what) is Harper Beckham named after?


Unless you've been living on another planet for the past 24 hours, you'll know that Victoria and David Beckham have welcomed a fourth member to their family. Harper Seven Beckham was born at 7.55am on 10 July at Cedars Sinai hospital in Los Angeles, weighing 7lbs 10oz. A jubilant David confirmed the happy news on Facebook (where he also posted a picture of a pregnant Victoria earlier this week, featured above), saying, "Victoria is doing really well and her [Harper's] brothers are delighted to have a baby sister."

While Stylist breathed a sigh of relief that the Beckhams did not name their daughter Justine Bieber (as per their son Romeo's suggestion), an element of mystery surrounds their choice. "Seven" is generally considered to be a nod to Beckham's football number when he played for Manchester United and England (although Seinfeld fans are also citing an episode in which one of the characters, George, wants to give his child the numerical name), but what "Harper" stands for is not yet entirely clear. And so Stylist decided to take a (tongue-in-cheek) look at the possible meanings behind the unusual name...

Picture credits: Rex Features

Harper's Bazaar magazine

As a modern-day style icon, Victoria has graced the cover of fashion magazine Harper's Bazaar - "the fashion resource for women who are the first to buy the best, from casual to couture" - six times globally, making it a very possible source of inspiration for Baby Beckham's name.

Harper Lee

Despite once telling a Spanish journalist "I haven't read a book in my life," it's possible that VB has since undergone a literary epiphany and named her darling daughter after Harper Lee, the author of Pulitzer Prize-winning novel To Kill A Mockingbird. What better way for Beckham junior to begin school life than with the name of a literary great?


A quick flick through any baby name dictionary reveals that the meaning of the name "Harper" is quite literally what it says on the, erm, birth certificate - an old-English term for a harpist or "minstrel". Perhaps Victoria is hoping her daughter will have inherited her musical talents?

Stephen Harper

We're not sure the Beckhams have ever met the 22nd Prime Minister of Canada, but there's an (admittedly slim) outside chance they named their bundle of joy after the Conservative Party leader.

Michelle Harper

Michelle Harper, the New York-based model and muse, is a more likely contender as inspiration for baby Beckham. The socialite is chic, sophisticated and is rarely seen without Dior, Balenciaga or Louboutin as companions - not unlike Victoria herself, in fact.

Harper, 1966 film

We imagine David Beckham loves his mystery drama movies - especially those starring a cool private investigator played by Paul Newman. Could it be he persuaded Victoria to name their baby girl after this award-winning whodunit, co-starring the ever-elegant Lauren Bacall and Julie Harris?

Harper Simon

Sure, she's a Spice Girl and he's friends with Snoop Dogg, but could it be that both Beckhams harbour a secret passion for psychedelic country and rock music? If so, it's possible they've chosen to name their newborn after Harper Simon, the American singer-songwriter and son of Paul Simon of Simon & Garfunkel fame.

Harper in Wizards of Waverly Place

Having fully embraced the US way of life since their move to the States, we're in no doubt that The Disney Channel plays a big part in the three Beckham boys' homelife, so perhaps the name was inspired by Harper Finkle, the character played by Jennifer Stone in the Disney Channel series Wizards of Waverly Place. Not the most obvious choice - but it sure beats Cinderella.


It may be that the Beckhams are hoping to bestow a bookworm-ish quality with their name choice, in honour of HarperCollins. As well as publishing the Collins English Dictionary (serious factual kudos) the News Corp-owned company is also famed for its children's books, including much-loved favourite Charlotte's Web.

Other celebrity baby Harpers

Finally, perhaps the name choice Harper was simply inspired by the Beckhams' fellow A-list parents and neighbours over in LA. Lisa Marie Presley, the only daughter of Elvis, chose the name Harper Vivienne Ann for one of her twins born in 2008 (the other was named Finley Aaron Love), and Foo Fighters rocker Dave Grohl also called his second daughter Harper Willow.



What not to do at a wedding


Gecko licks his eyeball

News of the World.jpg

News of the World shuts down



How to be a nasty woman: Stylist's 9 step guide

A must-read for all women considering themselves 'good girls'

by Harriet Hall
21 Oct 2016

Totally fetch: Rachel McAdams is on board with a Mean Girls reunion

Shut up.

by Moya Crockett
21 Oct 2016

“Criminalising purchase would be a danger to sex workers”

...argues sex worker and activist, Molly Smith

by The Stylist web team
20 Oct 2016

Eyebrows ahoy... A Cara Delevingne documentary is on its way

The Cara Project will follow Delevingne’s transition from model to actress.

by Moya Crockett
20 Oct 2016

The best A-list Instagrams of the week so far

From Emily Ratajkowski's team colours to Mindy Kaling's scarlet style

by Nicola Colyer
20 Oct 2016

Hilary Swank wins Oscars, still offered 5% of a male co-star's wage

Because woman < man

by Amy Swales
20 Oct 2016

Ellen DeGeneres reveals the secret to her happy marriage

And it's brilliantly simple

by Sarah Biddlecombe
20 Oct 2016

Amy Schumer shares open letter to Donald Trump supporters

“I shouldn’t have said that he was an orange, sexually-assaulting, fake-college-starting monster.”

by Moya Crockett
20 Oct 2016

Little Mix’s Jade Thirlwall opens up about anorexia battle

“I just wanted to waste away and disappear”

by Kayleigh Dray
20 Oct 2016

Kerry Washington chooses old-fashioned name for baby boy

The Scandal star has welcomed her second baby with husband Nnamdi Asomugha

by Kayleigh Dray
20 Oct 2016