This is a patronymic i.e. "the son of Philip" - from Phip, the pet form of the name or Phip-in, the diminutive form. Philip comes from the Greek name, Philippos - a compound of the elements "philein" to love and "hippos", horses. It is first recorded in England as Philipus circa 1150 - "The Gilbertine Houses Charters of Lincolnshire". One Henry Philip appears in the 1275 "Hundred Rolls of Norfolk". The English diminutives of the name include: Philott, Phippin, Phippen, Philcock etc. The form Phippen first appears at the beginning of the 17th century. In 1792 one William Phippen married a Catherine Merrett in St. George's Church, Hanover Square (London Marriage Licence Records). Amongst the earliest records of the future United States of America, but then known as New England, appears the name Phippen. On March 22nd 1635 "Ye Planter of London, Master Nicholas Trarice" included amongst the ten passengers Judith Phippen (also spelt Phippin) aged 16 years, servant to Mr. Nicholas Davies of Elizabeth City, Virginia. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of George Phippen (County Dorset), which was dated 1606, in the "Oxford University Register", during the reign of King James 1 of England and V1 of Scotland, 1603 - 1625. 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.