Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Wizard name! How the Beckham boys decided to call their new sister Harper after character in magical Disney show

By Sara Nathan and Ben Todd

As a five before there was Seven: The Beckhams pose together as a family earlier this year, before the birth of their baby new girl

The Beckhams’ decision to name their newborn daughter Harper Seven may have split public opinion yesterday, but one thing’s for sure: her three big brothers think it’s a wizard decision.

That’s because Brooklyn, 11, Romeo, eight, and five-year-old Cruz are said to have been behind the unusual moniker.

Harper is the name of a character from Disney series Wizards Of Waverly Place, the boys’ favourite TV show.

As Victoria, 37, was recovering from the birth in Los Angeles yesterday – with husband David at her side, a source said: ‘The entire family had input – Victoria and David love the name, but it was the boys who actually came up with it.

‘Victoria loved it because it’s an Olde English name and even though Harper is an American by birth, she will always have English roots.’

The Mail has been told that former England captain Beckham used to read books based on the Wizards Of Waverly Place series to the three boys when they were younger.

Child stars: Jennifer Stone stars as 'Harper' and Selena Gomez as 'Alex' in the popular TV show Wizards Of Waverly Place

They have also visited the set of the show, about three young wizard siblings and their friend, a girl called Harper Finkle.

When it came to baby Harper’s middle name Seven, that is her father’s ‘lucky number’, famously being his squad number for Manchester United and England.

Number fixation is a well-known symptom of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), from which Beckham suffers.

The family friend said: ‘Victoria and David only came up with the name at the last minute.

‘It’s a very lucky number for David and he has always wanted to name one of his children Seven.

New addition: David and Victoria Beckham have welcomed a new addition to their family, a 7lbs 10oz baby girl

Sun and sea: David enjoys playing with the family bulldog, Coco, on the beach with his sons yesterday after they announced the birth of Harper Seven

’It was obviously David’s number at Manchester United and she was born at 7.55am, during the seventh month of the year and weighing 7lb 10oz, so it made perfect sense to them.’

After his daughter arrived on Sunday morning, Beckham told fans: ‘She weighed a healthy 7lb 10oz and arrived at 7.55 this morning, here in LA. Victoria is doing really well and her brothers are delighted to have a baby sister.’

Beckham is expected to have another tattoo – his 20th – in the coming months to commemorate Harper’s birth.

As news of the birth spread yesterday, television fans were quick to point out that the couple are not the first to come up with the name.

It appeared in a classic episode of cult sitcom Seinfeld, and many are speculating as to whether the Beckhams are fans of the show.

In an almost prophetical 1996 episode George Costanza, the show's hapless screwball who once described himself as 'Lord of the Idiots', boasts of his idea of an 'original' name for a baby 'Seven'.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, he is ridiculed by all those around him in a clip that will be lapped up by critics of the celebrity trend for unusual names.

Costanza can be seen driving with girlfriend Susan when they get on the subject of baby names - and he believes he hits on the perfect name.

'It's a beautiful name for a boy or a girl,' George says after announcing his choice. 'Especially a girl. Or a boy.'

Proud: David announced the baby's name on his Facebook page

Seinfeld fans? Some are speculating that the couple took inspiration from a classic episode of the cult sitcom in which George Costanza (right) decides that Seven is the perfect name for his own baby

Ironically, he then explains it is not only a name but a 'tribute' to New York Yankees legend Mickey Mantle. Like David Beckham, the baseball star wore the number7.

As they get into a heated argument, an upset Susan continues to bash the name, saying, 'It's not a name, it's a number It's awful, I hate it!'

Later in the episode, George reveals the name to sitcom lead Jerry Seinfeld, who immediately makes fun of him.

'I defy you to come up with a better name than Seven,' says George.

'All right,' replies Jerry, as he walks into his kitchen looking at objects around him before picking up a coffee mug.

'Let's see - how about Mug? Mug Costanza. That's original. Or Ketchup. Pretty name for a girl.'

Celeb favourite: Neil Patrick Harris and his partner David Burtka named one of their twins Harper, which is also the name of Tiffani Thiessen's daughter (right)

Popular choice: Lisa Marie Presley (left) and Dave Grohl (centre) chose the name for their daughters, while Myleene Klass' (right) newest addition is named Hero Harper

Although the Beckhams have professed their love for all things American, it is not known whether they are fans of the very American sitcom - or whether they'll be naming their next child, if they have one, after a mug.

The couple's older children have far from ordinary names. Brooklyn, born in 1999, was named after the New York borough where he was conceived.

Romeo, born in 2002, gets his name from Shakespeare's lovesick character, while they named Cruz, born in Madrid in 2005, after the Spanish word for 'cross.'

David confirmed the news on his Facebook page after he and wife Victoria welcomed the baby, who weighed 7lb 10oz, at 7.55am yesterday morning.

Overruled: David recently revealed that his sons would have liked for the new addition to be named Justine Bieber Beckham, after their idol

The footballer wrote: 'I am so proud and excited to announce the birth of our daughter Harper Seven Beckham. She weighed a healthy 7lbs 10oz and arrived at 7.55 this morning, here in LA.

'Victoria is doing really well and her brothers are delighted to have a baby sister xx'

Following the birth of the couple's fourth child, a spokesperson said: 'David and Victoria Beckham are delighted to announce the birth of their daughter.

‘Happy and healthy she arrived at 7.55 am this morning at Cedars Sinai hospital in Los Angeles. Brooklyn, Romeo and Cruz are excited to welcome their new baby sister to the family.'

A girl amongst the boys club: Victoria is said to have always loved the classic English name Harper

The child was born by elective Caesarean, in the same way as the Beckhams' older children.

And a source told The Sun that David was so happy about the new arrival that he was literally crying with joy.

The insider said: 'David has been crying with joy. They are all so happy.'

The pair are also said to be 'stunned' because the little girl looks so much like Victoria did when she was a baby.

Paddy Power are already giving odds of 12/1 to have a UK number one single, 25/1 to marry an English footballer and 40/1 to become a fashion designer in her later years.

Oh baby! David posted this picture of his pregnant wife Victoria on his Facebook page earlier this week

Following the birth of the little girl, David's sister Joanne tweeted: 'Big congrats to my sister in law @victoriabeckham and my big bro on the birth of my beautiful niece :) can't wait 2 see u all xx'

A delighted Mel B, who is expecting her third child later this year, also expressed her excitement on the network site, writing: 'Congrats!!! Yipeee another spice baby is born, damn it wish it was me this AM cos I feel like I'm about to POP!'

And Emma Bunton added: 'Big kiss to @victoriabeckham can't wait to meet your gorgeous little girl!'

Victoria has remained active throughout her pregnancy - working on her fashion line and travelling up until last month.

Just days ago the LA Galaxy star, 36, posted a portrait of his heavily pregnant wife that put her form on show in all its glory.

He wrote on his Facebook page: 'Took this pic of Victoria while she wasn't looking. She looks amazing, so close now to the baby being born!'

It's getting close! David was on the field for LA Galaxy yesterday ahead of his wife giving birth

And, earlier this week, David and Victoria were wished good luck for their arrival by Prince William and Catherine, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

David attended a drinks reception welcoming the royal couple to Los Angeles, but Victoria was absent from the event given that she was so close to the end of her pregnancy.

The footballer told Prince William: 'Victoria really wanted to come but she is just so tired at the moment. She sent you both lots of love. How was Canada? It looked amazing.'

Prince William replied: 'Don’t be silly, send her all our love and tell her good luck with it all. It’s been an amazing few days – we’ve been so lucky with all the incredible places we’ve been able to see and we’ve met so many fascinating people.
It’s been amazing, amazing.'

And, following the birth, William and Catherine were quick to send a message of congratulations to the Beckhams, according to their press secretary Miguel Head, who added they were unlikely to have time to meet the new arrival.

Congratulations: David's UK-based sister Joanne was quick to take to her Twitter page to offer her congratulations

Spice love: Emma Bunton offered her congratulations to the Beckhams on their new arrival

My turn! Victoria's former Spice Girls bandmate Mel B said congratulations but said she wanted to be the one to give birth

David also spoke about the media frenzy surrounding the birth of his first daughter.

He said: 'I woke up on Wednesday to a tonne of messages on my voicemail from our friends congratulating me on the birth of our daughter.

'I turned to Victoria and said: “Did I miss something?” Apparently it’s being reported every day that she’s already been born. One way or another, fingers crossed, she’ll be with us in the next few days.'

On Wednesday a Twitter rumour spread like wildfire that Victoria had given birth to a baby girl named Felicity, a claim that was quickly rubbished by their spokesperson.

Going solo: David attended a drinks reception to welcome the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to Los Angeles earlier this week and was wished luck for the arrival by the royal pair

The former Spice Girl turned fashion designer, 37, has often hinted at her desire for a daughter, saying in one interview that should could imagine “painting her nails, putting on make-up, and choosing clothes” with her.

Last year she said: ‘Everyone keeps asking me if I would like to have a little girl and I think, at some point, if I am lucky enough to have another baby that would be great. If I am blessed enough.’

The couple’s main home is a £14million mansion in Beverly Hills but the couple have yet to decide where they will live once his contract with LA Galaxy expires in November.

Speculation had mounted that they would return to the UK after they put on hold plans to sell their £18 million home - ‘Beckingham Palace’ Hertfordshire.

Victoria recently gave a frank appraisal of how she and her husband differ in their view of life in Los Angeles.

She said: ‘He misses European football. But America really works with my personality.’

Growing brood: Victoria and David are already parents to sons Brooklyn, Romeo and Cruz

The couple first met in 1997 and became engaged a year later before having first son Brooklyn - famously named after the place where he was conceived – in 1999.

Four months later, the Beckhams enjoyed a sumptuous wedding at Luttrellstown Castle in Ireland, with the couple much ridiculed for opting to sit on golden thrones.

The couple have become one of the biggest brands in the planet with an array of endorsement deals and are now worth an estimated £150 million.

Second son Romeo was born in 2002 and Beckham left the UK in July 2003 when Real Madrid paid £25million to sign him from Manchester United.

Building up: Victoria was last seen out with David in Las Vegas on 29th June

His wife chose not to move to Spain until the following year choosing instead to focus on a solo career after the demise of the Spice Girls.

David announced he was transferred in July 2007 to LA Galaxy and they moved to Beverly Hills where the boys have been attending a prestigious private school ever since.

Victoria has carved out a successful design career and her dresses are now a favourite with Hollywood stars.

And bets of what their little girl will grow up to be are already being placed and the Irish bookmaking firm Paddy Power has offered odds of 100:1 on Harper following in dad’s footsteps and going out for the England Women’s team.

The odds of her becoming a singer in the mode of her former Spice Girl mother are 16:1.


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