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Piper Name Meaning – What Does The Name Piper Mean?

What does the name Piper Mean? In this quick guide, we will explore the origin, history, popularity, and meaning of the name Piper. Let's get started.

What does the name Piper Mean? In this quick guide, we will explore the origin, history, popularity, and meaning of the name Piper. 

Let’s get started. 

Meaning of The Name Piper

The name Piper is an English origin name, derived from the nickname “Piper,” meaning a “pipe-player”. Piper is also an occupational name referring to someone who actually played the pipes in a medieval band or orchestra.

These musicians were generally associated with church feasts as well as public celebrations such as coronations and royal tournaments. Piper carries an attractive and mysterious sound, often associated with adventure and travel.

It can also be regarded as a nature name referring to the pied piper of legend, who famously lured the town rats away by playing enchanting tunes on his magical pipe. Despite its intriguing origins, Piper is still a relatively rare name – however it has gained some popularity over the last few years. In 2012, it was ranked #257 among girls in England and Wales according to British government data and #165 in Australia according to McCrindle research agency figures.

It’s now used more often for girls than boys – possibly because of its association with charming mythical characters like Peter Pan’s Tinkler Bell or Pied Piper of Hamelin story.

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History and Origin of The Name Piper

The name Piper is thought to derive from the Middle English term for a flute or pipe player, ‘pypare’. It originated in the Anglo-Saxon culture and was used as a given name with reference to music. The name Piper has also been utilized throughout Europe and the United States as a first or last name due to its pleasant and unique sound.

Interestingly, the meaning of Piper is disputed by some experts as potentially being connected to the Old French word ‘pipere’ which has its roots in Latin, meaning ‘to offer’ or ‘to consecrate something’ in religious terms.

Throughout history, biblical references have been made when it comes to Piper as well. In I Kings 19, Elijah responds to being addressed by an angel with Piper (other versions utilize ‘provide’).

This moment could suggest that birth of someone with this rare name today could be considered one visited by angels— a comforting thought for those parents expecting their own little Piper!

The most notable bearer of this surname was American saxophonist John Coltrane, although his real name was Mary Lou Williams. Since then more Pipers have become increasingly popular on screen— comedian Charlotte Ritchie in Fresh Meat and Grey’s Anatomy and actress Maia Mitchell in The Fosters are just two you may recognize!

Gender of The Name Piper

The name Piper is an English baby name, first popularized in the 18th century by the French. This name is derived from a surname, referring to a person who played on a pipe or flute. The spelling of Piper is the same for both sexes and can be seen as more of a unisex name than some of its counterparts.

This name has been popular for baby girls over the decades, reaching its peak popularity for females in 2012 when it ranked number 65 nationwide in the United States. For baby boys, Piper has also grown in popularity recently and 2020 saw it come close to entering the all-time top 100 lots again, with a rank of 112.

In terms of gender roles, while it’s certainly still acceptable to give this name to either sex regardless of tradition, it’s typically seen as more suited towards little boys.

Still, many modern parents enjoy the idea of breaking down gender stereotypes when naming their children, hence why many feel that either sex could wear it well and typically assign their own notions onto this specific name.

Popularity of The Name Piper

The name Piper is relatively new, having been popularized in the last twenty years. According to BabyCenter data from 2019, Piper was the 71st most popular baby name for girls born in that year, and the 213th most popular for boys.

Additionally, as of January 2020, it is ranked 537th for female baby names and 582nd for male baby names among all social security applications filed in the United States.

Piper’s popularity is likely because of its perky sound and sophistication (similar other names like Harper and Brooklyn). It’s also quite versatile; while often used more frequently by mothers who wish to give their daughter an intellectual-sounding yet slightly edgy name that has a cool factor, it works just as well on boys, since many parents wish to give their sons’ names ending in –er that sound a bit smarter than common alternatives like Hunter or Tyler.

Variations of The Name Piper

Piper is a very versatile name and there is a variety of spellings that are used by people around the world. Common variations of the name do not necessarily have different meanings or implications, although there is some minor difference in the origin or language associated with them.

Variations of the name Piper include:

  • Pyper (Irish)
  • Piper (English)
  • Peppar (Dutch)
  • Pfeiffer (German)
  • Papelard (French)
  • Pepiniere (Italian)
  • Peяpeя (Russian)

No matter what variation or spelling you use, all forms of Piper have the same meaning and pronunciation, which also has its own significance. The name Piper has two main sources – either derived from an English surname or representing a type of bird.

The English surname source was an occupational one, deriving from someone who piped music – likely with wooden flutes. In this context, Piper can mean one who plays pipes or one who makes wooden instruments.

The other interpretation links to a type of bird called a piper, which in some cases would be more appropriately referred to as the piping plover. This small bird was known to make merry music while they flew and they were often used symbolically to represent singers and musicians because of their sound production abilities.

Famous People Named Piper in History

People with the name Piper have gone on to great accomplishments throughout history and have been praised for their creative minds and hard work. Famous people named Piper include:

  • Piper Laurie, an American stage actor who won a Golden Globe Award in 1962 and has been nominated three times for an Academy Award. She is best known for her roles in such films as Hitchhike to Happiness, Wuthering Heights, The Hustler, Carrie, Children of a Lesser God, Steel Magnolias and Twin Peaks.
  • Piper Perabo, an American actress best known for her roles in Coyote Ugly and Cheaper by the Dozen. She also had recurring roles in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and Covert Affairs.
  • Piper Palin, a daughter of Sarah Palin who rose to fame when her mother became the Republican vice presidential nominee in 2008. She is now a published author and entrepreneur.
  • Piper Curda, an American actress who is most well known for her role as Jasmine Kang on Disney’s I Didn’t Do It.
  • Piper Kerman, an American writer whose experiences in federal prison were documented in the autobiographical book Orange Is the New Black which was then adapted into the hit Netflix TV series of the same name.

Pronunciation of The Name Piper

Piper is a name of English origin derived from the Middle English “piper”, meaning “a playing on pipe or flute”. Pronounced as “PIE-per,” the name has grown in popularity over the years due to its association with popular namesakes as well as its inclusion in songs and television shows.

In some cultures, this name is associated with a bell-ringer due to its homophone “pipper”, which is an old Norse term meaning “rattle” or “clang”.

The corresponding form of the name in several languages include Pipper (English), Per (Norwegian), Pirro (Italian), Pyter (Dutch/Flemish) and Pépèr(French). With many different sound alternatives, this hearty and kitschy name also carries with it many endearing nicknames such as Pie, Pipsy, Peppy and Terry.

In recent years, Piper has become a popular unisex choice among progressive parents who favor genderless names. Its edgy loveliness transcends time and place and its character offers an undeniable charm around any name bearer.

Numerology of The Name Piper

The numerological analysis of the name Piper indicates that it is associated with the vibration of number 5. Number 5 denotes the qualities and attributes of adaptability, flexibility, and creativity. This is an individual who can think outside the box and craft unique solutions to challenge. They may be more likely to take a risk and move against tradition.

Piper’s are also thought to be independent problem solvers with strong desires for freedom and independence. They are often drawn to occupations that offer a high degree of autonomy, but need an environment where their unique ideas can be expressed without fear or censorship.

The name Piper also resonates with the vibration of the number 6, which is associated with balance, harmony, and justice.

Those named Piper understand what it means to stand up for what they believe in while considering both sides of any argument. A significant comprehension of diplomacy adds value to all their interactions with others.

Finally, the numerology of this name indicates a strong connection to creative endeavors like photography or music production as well as careers in which vast amounts of data need organizing and analyzing – such as analytics or research positions – so they don’t become bored by mundane tasks.

This combination makes Piper’s an amazing asset in high-performing teams where members encourage experimentation instead of sticking closely within rigid page boundaries.

Frequently Asked Questions About The Name Piper

The name Piper is a unisex name originating in the English language. It derives from the Middle English piper, meaning one who plays the pipe or flute and can be found in old records as early as the 12th century. In modern times, the name has grown in popularity across many countries.

Below are some frequently asked questions about the name Piper:

What Does ‘Piper’ Mean?

The name Piper is derived from Middle English piper, meaning one who plays the pipe or flute.

What Language Does ‘Piper’ Originate From?

The name Piper originates from the English language.

How Popular Is The Name ‘Piper’?

The name has grown in popularity across many countries over time and is considered a unisex name for both boys and girls.

Are There Any Nicknames for ‘Piper’?

Yes, there are several nicknames for the unisex given name of Piper, such as Pip, Pippa, Pippy or Pyper.


The name Piper has a number of different meanings. Depending on the particular origin, it could mean ‘pipe player’, from an Old English word referring to an early wind instrument, or from a more modern context deriving from the popular name Pepper, meaning ‘spicy one’.

Other possible interpretations include ‘treasured’ (in Old French), ‘arrow’ (in German) and ‘rock’ (in Hebrew).

No matter what the provenance of the name may be, one thing for sure is that Piper is a terribly charming and endearing name shared by many people around the globe. It’s full of personality and spunk, suggesting its owner will be spirited and full of life.

For those looking to make their own mark in life with a strong-willed yet gentle personal touch, the moniker Piper just might be ideal!


We DO NOT guarantee the accuracy of any listed name and its meanings. We collected these names with our best efforts. Though if you find any incorrect name or meaning please contact us at

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Housam is a content marketing expert with a knack for writing articles. He loves to name and nickname things creatively, so much so that he started a blog in which he writes about names and their meanings. He is also an avid reader, the dad of two wonderful dogs, and a full-time RV traveler with no definite destination.

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