According to renouned researchers the family name Wyllie could have two possible origins. It may be local in origin, being one of those names derived from the place where a man once lived or where he once held land. In this instance the name is a synonym of Willey, from the Old English meaning "willow wood" or "withy wood" and the name of place in Cheshire, Herefordshire, Salop, Warwickshire and Devon, or from the Old English meaning a "wood or clearing with a heathen temple", from a place in Surrey.
Alternatively the name may be patronymic in origin, derived from the first name William, which was extremely popular in Britain after the Conquest in 1066, when the Normans, under William the Conqueror, became rulers of England. This name is also popular in Wales in various forms, although the form Wyllie is quite rare.
Records of the surname in Britain date back to the fourteenth century
to one Thomas Wyly, listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax in 1379. There is
also record of the baptism of one May Willy, daughter of one Richard Willye,
at Saint Peter, Cornwall, in 1579. Lists of emigrants refer to one John
Wyllie, aged 25 who was a passenger on the ship "Elizabeth and Ann" bound
for New England, in 1635.
There is also record of one Edward Willey of Boston, who was a juror, in 1686.
Jenner libraries version of the history is " research has revealed that the first record of the name Wyllie was found in Dumfries-shire where they were seated from ancient times. The family name is believed to be descended from originally from Strathclyde Britons. By 100AD the race had formed into descernible Clans and families, perhaps the the first evidence of the family structure in Britain."
There are of course a lot of Wyllies in Scotland and particularly in
the Ayr/Dumfries areas which is generally thought to be the original lands
of the Clan.
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