This ancient and famous name is locational and derives from 'the cheap' as in London's Cheapside, i.e., a market place. The name has two diminutives, firstly in the very rare 'chipet' which is a shortened form of 'petit chip', as in Robert Chipet recorded in the Somerset Rolls for 1330 in the reign of King Edward III (1327 - 1377) and secondly as the modern 'chipps' both meaning 'son of chip'. It is possible that the name is partially job descriptive as the developed John Chipman, Chepman or Chapman does describe an early travelling merchant or trader. There are two famous name bearers listed in the National Biography, both involved in music. Thomas Paul Chipp (1793-1870) Chorister of Westminster Abbey, a harpist and drummer with the London Orchestras, and his son Edmund Thomas, composer, chorister, organist and violinist. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Chip or Chyp, which was dated 1291, The Somerset County Pipe Rolls, during the reign of King Edward I, 'The Hammer of the Scots', 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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