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South Newton Wylye & Fisherton de la Mere Great Wishford Stockton Berwick St James Stapleford The Langfords Winterbourne Stoke Wylye & Fisherton de la Mere The Langfords

The Parish of Middle Wylye Valley

Church: St John the Baptist, Stockton  

BA12 0SE

The Mystery of the Lady from the 14th Century

In the south aisle of St John the Baptist church lies the stone figure, or effigy, of a lady, with a small dog at her feet. Who is she? What is her name? How did she come to be there? No one knows!

She is dressed in 14th century costume complete with ‘chemise, cote with sleeves to the wrist, surcote with long tippets trailing from the elbows and a mantle over the shoulders. Her face is framed in gorget and wimple.’

She is believed to be the ‘foundress of the aisle’. This is because of her 14th century clothing, the 14th century style of the windows and that the recess of her tomb was noted to be part of the original wall when it was discovered in the 19th century. Therefore, it is thought that the south aisle, and the small altar within, was originally her chantry chapel. During the reformation the dividing wall was removed and her tomb then became part of the main body of the church.

However, who she is and what her name is still remains a mystery!

With thanks to Capt. H J S Banks, R.N.

The 14th century style of dress A 19th century copy of her head high up at one end of the aisle The recumbent figure of the 'foundress of the aisle'