This interesting and unusual name has two sources of origin. Firstly it could be an occupational name for someone connected with the spinning of flax or wool process, as 'toppe' is a Middle English word for a tuft or handful of hair, wool or fibre, especially the portion of flax put on the distaff of a spinning wheel. A topper was probably the one who put the 'toppe' on the distaff. Alternately this name could be an anglicization of a German occupational name for a maker of metal or carthenware pots from the German 'Topfer', a potter. In St. Andrews, Enfield one Hericus Topper married Joanna Hunsden on 27th November 1563. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Walter le Toppare, which was dated 1275 Subsidy Rolls Worcestershire, 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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