Possibly first coined as "friendy-wendy" by a young friend of Scottish novelist and playwright J. M. Barrie for a character in his 1904 play "Peter Pan" or a form of the Welsh name Gwendolen. It became a favorite in England during the 1960s influenced by three actresses including Dame Wendy Hiller who won an Academy Award in 1959. The name peaked in popularity just 10 years later when Dave Thomas opened his first Wendy's fast food restaurant.

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Wendy Wasserstein (playwright)
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