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Wiltshire is a county in Southern England. It is chiefly notable for the number of ruins which adorn the landscape - Avebury, Stonehenge, the Shadow House and so forth. These however should not be taken as a sign that Wiltshire has had a particularly troubled history: rather, it has so long been a site of human settlement that it has inevitably acquired a large variety of edifices in a state of decay.

It is thought by antiquarians that ruins such as Stonehenge may have an origin earlier than the Romans, with some boldly speculating they were first built by the Druids - but be that as it may, it is to Wiltshire that Strange travels to make his first attempt to apprentice himself to a magician. His intended tutor is Maria Absalom, whom he has summoned to appear to him in a dream. Unfortunately Mr Segundus blunders into the same dream and frightens the lady off. It is no matter, however. Mr Segundus and his friend Honeyfoot counsel Strange to make an approach to Gilbert Norrell himself, which eventually he does[23]. The rest is destiny.

The Greysteels, whom Strange meets on his travels, are a Wiltshire family[60].