From an English surname denoting someone who played the flute or fife, this probably began life as a girls' name when it was chosen by Rosetta Jacobs (b. 1933) for her stage name and the name she is known by, Piper Laurie. Since then it's been used for a character on the U.S. tv series "Charmed" (debuted in 1998), and its popularity has taken off from there.

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