Wylye's Mystery Popjay'Famous Pobjoys'

The following extract is from a booklet about the parish church of St Mary in Wylye on sale in the church.

"Wylye is an agricultural parish, extending up into the downs of Salisbury Plain... [The church] stands on a low mound in the centre of the village... The large and flamboyant tomb by the South gate of the churchyard dates from the late 17th or early 18th century. The tradition, quoted in the History of Wiltshire, written by Sir Richard Colt Hoare of Stourhead and published in 1825, is as follows: 'A person by the name of Popjay, of mean extraction, went abroad in his early youth, and after some years returned to Wily in his carriage, and with a show of having acqiured considerable wealth; he caused this expensive tomb to be built, and the bodies of his mother and sister, who had been dead for some time, to be disinterred and placed within it, but shortly after he left the country, and the tomb remains still unpaid for.' There is, however, a local tradition that the rector at the time subsequently paid for the tomb and was himself buried in it..."

Wylye tree