Meaning: “pious; dutiful; devoted.”
The name is a feminine form of the Late Latin male name Pius which means exactly what it says! Its masculine form was mainly used as a religious name, taken by priests, monks and popes (twelve of whom bore the name).
The name may have been used in reference to a line in a prayer to the Virgin Mary (Salve Regina)
O clemens, O pia, O dulcis Virgo Maria
It was also borne by a 3rd-century Carthaginian Christian saint and martyr.
It was a very popular name in Scandinavia, particularly in Sweden at the beginning of the 20th-century all the way up until the 1960s. The earliest records for the name Pia in Sweden go as far back as 1848.
Currently Pia is the 22nd most popular female name in Slovenia (2010) and the 28th most popular in Chile, (2010). Her rankings in other countries are as follows:
- # 25 (Germany, 2011)
- # 40 (Austria, 2010)
Other forms of the name include:
- Piia (Finnish/Estonian)
- Pía (Spanish)
Masculine forms include:
- Pius (German/Latin)
- Pio (Italian)
- Pío (Spanish/Portuguese)