Burnley's perfect Barclays Premier League record at Turf Moor was punctured as Wigan came from behind to end a proud unbeaten home record stretching back to February.
The Clarets had won ten straight home games since losing to Sheffield Wednesday eight months ago to propel themselves from the Championship to half way up the top flight.
But Wigan proved a test too far as the Clarets suffered the first real hiccup of their fledgling campaign as the visitors took maximum points on their travels for the first time since the opening day of the season.
It had all begun so well for Burnley when top scorer Steven Fletcher netted for the second home game running as Owen Coyle's men again made a flying start.
Fletcher opens the scoring
But a disastrous equaliser from Hugo Rodallega, which also saw goalkeeper Brian Jensen limp off injured, gave Wigan an immediate route back into the game and the powerful Latics ran out impressive winners thanks to second half goals from Rodallega and Emerson Boyce.
Boss Coyle handed Chris Eagles his first Premier League start of the season following his impressive substitute's appearance at Blackburn a week earlier as Burnley looked to bounce back from their derby disappointment.
That meant a switch into a preferred central striking role for Fletcher and within four minutes the move paid off as the Clarets went ahead.
Robbie Blake was the instigator as he collected a throw-in from Stephen Jordan and made space for a perfect low cross which Fletcher slid into the net at the far post with just enough power to cross the line.
Steven Fletcher celebrates his early goal
But as at Ewood Park, Burnley could not hold onto their lead for long as Jensen suddenly became the centre of attention.
He first saved from Rodallega after a fine tackle from Graham Alexander had stopped Charles N'Zogbia in his tracks and then made a point-blank block to deny Mario Melchiot after Burnley were caught out at a corner.
But the afternoon then took a downward turn for the big Dane as he went over on an ankle as Melchiot swung a dangerous cross into the penalty area which had Jensen caught in two minds whether to come or leave for Tyrone Mears to deal with.
As he fell to the ground, the dangerous Rodallega was left to tap into an empty net with 11 minutes gone.
And after a lengthy spell of treatment and a brief attempt to walk off the knock Jensen was replaced by Diego Penny, who got his first taste of league action since the opening day of last season.
The disruption did little to help Burnley clear their heads and when Wigan full-back Maynor Figueroa also limped off with almost half an hour gone, referee Lee Mason added six minutes injury-time to the end of the first half.
Burnley at least finished the opening period back on the front foot with Fletcher driving them forward and Eagles and Elliott trying to make inroads from behind.
And the momentum was maintained after the break with Eagles only inches away from restoring Burnley's advantage with a superb run in the 48th-minute.
Brian Jensen receives treatment but can't continue
Collecting the ball just over half-way, Eagles' pace took him past two defenders but at full stretch he could not quite direct his shot past Kirkland whose decisive touch took the ball into the side netting.
Mason awarded a goal-kick but there had undoubtedly been an intervention from Kirkland, which grew in importance after 51 minutes when Wigan went 2-1 ahead through Rodallega.
The Columbian international had been a threat all afternoon, coming in off the left flank to support Scotland, and the pair combined when Scotland pulled the ball back for Wigan's top scorer to fire his fourth goal of the season low past Penny and in off the post.
Burnley looked to respond with Coyle switching to a 4-4-2 formation as Elliott was pushed wide and Eagles switched to the opposite flank.
And with David Nugent sent into the fray after 67 minutes the home side finally found a head of steam.
Nugent's run and cross ended with an Alexander shot which was saved by Kirkland before the Wigan goal led a charmed life as the Clarets did everything but score.
Eagles just failed to turn in a cross from Elliott and then when he retrieved the ball to set up Tyrone Mears, the full-back was denied his first goal for Burnley by a block six yards out.
Fletcher continued his fine afternoon with another strong run and excellent cross but after chesting the ball down Nugent was crowded out before he could pull the trigger.
And after enjoying their best spell of the game the Clarets found themselves 3-1 down with 14 minutes to go following more lax defending.
This time Rodallega was the provider with a corner which Paul Scharner flicked on for Boyce to sweep home unattended at the back post and although Clarke Carlisle hit the bar with a header late on for Burnley, the points had gone.
Burnley: Jensen (Penny 15) Jordan, Carlisle, Caldwell, Mears, Alexander, Bikey (McDonald 82), Elliott, Fletcher, Blake (Nugent 67), Eagles.Substitutes: Kalvenes, Duff, Gudjonsson, Thompson.
Wigan: Kirkland, Thomas, Scharner (King 78), Scotland, N'Zogbia, Boyce, Bramble, Rodallega, Melchiot, Diame, Figueroa (Gomez 31). Substitutes: Hee-Cho, Koumas, Pollitt, Sinclair, Kapo.
Referee: L Mason