And, whiles I wrought, my master would leave me, and doff his raiment and don his rags, and other infirmities, and cozen the world, which he did clepe it "plucking of the goose"...
-- Charles Reade, The Cloister and the Hearth, 2003
O, we have been advised that in Egypt lives a rare bird yclept Ibis which walks up to stroke the Crocodile with its feathers so the monster squats paralyzed.
-- Evan S. Connell, Alchymic Journals, 1991
Clepe is derived from the Old English word cleopian which is related to the Middle Low German word kleperen meaning "to rattle." The odd iteration of clepe is its past participle yclept which is its more common variant. The initial y is a vestige from Middle English.