Downton Abbey (TV Series 2010–2015) Poster



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  • In the UK, Downton Abbey airs on a commercial network, ITV, and therefore has commercial breaks built into it. In the U.S., it's shown on a noncommercial network, PBS, which has underwriting credits and other network material before and after the episode, but no interruptions during it.

    For the PBS airings, the series is edited (by the production company) into fewer--but longer--episodes than are aired in the UK. For season 1, PBS requested cuts of about 25 minutes total to fit the episodes into certain timeslots. (A wildly inaccurate article in the UK's Daily Mail newspaper claimed that some two hours of content had been removed.) However, the season 1 DVDs sold by PBS and other U.S. outlets contained the unedited UK version of the show.

    Because of viewer criticism, subsequent seasons on PBS have aired intact, only being restructured into fewer episodes as mentioned previously. PBS has used timeslots ranging from 60-120 minutes to accommodate the series. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • Episode #1.1 (2010): April 1912

    Episode #1.2 (2010): September 1912

    Episode #1.3 (2010): March 1913

    Episode #1.4 (2010): May 1913

    Episode #1.5 (2010): August 1913

    Episode #1.6 (2010): May 1914

    Episode #1.7 (2010): July-August 1914

    Episode #2.1 (2011): November 1916

    Episode #2.2 (2011): April 1917

    Episode #2.3 (2011): July 1917

    Episode #2.4 (2011): February 1918

    Episode #2.5 (2011): August 1918

    Episode #2.6 (2011): November 1918

    Episode #2.7 (2011): March 1919

    Episode #2.8 (2011): April 1919

    Christmas at Downton Abbey (2011): Christmas 1919 (Decemer 1919 - January 1920)

    Episode #3.1 (2012): March 1920

    Episode #3.2 (2012): April 1920

    Episode #3.3 (2012): May 1920

    Episode #3.4 (2012): June 1920

    Episode #3.5 (2012): July 1920

    Episode #3.6 (2012): July 1920

    Episode #3.7 (2012): August 1920

    Episode #3.8 (2012): September 1920

    A Journey to the Highlands (2012): September 1921

    Episode #4.1 (2013): February 1922

    Episode #4.2 (2013): March 1922

    Episode #4.3 (2013): April 1922

    Episode #4.4 (2013): April 1922

    Episode #4.4 (2013): May 1922

    Episode #4.6 (2013): June 1922

    Episode #4.7 (2013): July 1922

    Episode #4.8 (2013): August 1922

    The London Season (2013): May 1923

    Episode #5.1 (2014): February 1924

    Episode #5.2 (2014): April 1924

    Episode #5.3 (2014): Mid 1924

    Episode #5.4 (2014): Mid 1924

    Episode #5.5 (2014): September 1924

    Episode #5.6 (2014): September 1924

    Episode #5.7 (2014): September 1924 - October 1924

    Episode #5.8 (2014): October 1924

    A Moorland Holiday (2014): October 1924- Christmas Eve 1924

    The PBS broadcast for series one acknowledged the passing of time with on-screen dates stamps more frequently than did the ITV broadcast. To learn more about dates in series one, refer to the script book by Julian Fellowes.

    Timeline credited to the Downton Abbey Wiki and the separate Wikipedia. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • Between the 1870s and the outbreak of WWI in 1914, hundreds of wealthy American women visited England and Europe to marry aristocrats. The earliest American heiresses married impoverished aristocrats because they were snubbed by American high society, but the later heiresses wanted titles and to mingle with European royalty. Cora was born to Isidore Levinson, a dry goods multi-millionaire from Cincinnati. She arrived in England, with her mother, in 1888, at the age of 20, and was engaged to Robert, then Viscount (pronounced vie-count) Downton by the end of her first season. It is not that remarkable that she is American. Britain still welcomes the odd American to its shores.

    More info on American heiresses here: Edit (Coming Soon)

  • Refer to this page for information:

    In addition the episodes state that Robert's father required the fortune of Robert's wife Cora be tied to the estate and therefore the entail. In essence, saying that Cora's money becomes the property of Robert's heir. Since Robert had no sons, the rules of male primogeniture state that the closest living male heir becomes the inheritor of the entailed estate. This is why Cousin Violet, the Dowager Countess of Grantham attempted to challenge the entail, so that they would not be penniless if the heir decided to evict the daughters from Downton Abbey when Robert passed away. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • The term was originally used only in Northern England, meaning the period from Saturday noon to Monday morning, and was not in wide use until the late 19th century. The notion of people working for only 5 or 5 1/2 days in a week would not be familiar to the Dowager Countess, who is accustomed to the countryside and great houses, where people worked 6 or 7 days a week.

    Edit: It could also be that neither the dowager, nor anyone she'd socialize with, has ever worked at all. Therefore it wouldn't occur to her that there are "workdays" and "non-workdays." In her life, a Saturday would be no different from a Tuesday. (A Sunday would, but only by religious custom.) When Matthew mentions the weekend, it only underscores that until now he's been a middle class lawyer in a very different circle. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • It is true that the Republic of Turkey did not exist until 1923; before then, it was part of the Ottoman Empire. However, Turkey was the most powerful and important part of the Ottoman Empire, and so the Empire was often called "Turkey", just as the United Kingdom is sometimes referred to as "Britain." Also, the country was named after the people that lived there, the Turkish people, which had been in use since nearly 1000 A.D. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • Somewhere in North Yorkshire. The village is located between the towns of Ripon and Thirsk. A signpost in Downton village shows that Thirsk is 6 miles in one direction, while Ripon is 9 miles in the other direction. About 230 miles/370 km NNE of London.

    There are many mentions in the scripts of towns such as Ripon, Easingwold, York, Thirsk and Malton being nearby, and there are occasional mentions of Yorkshire in some episodes. Some of the servants (eg Mr Carson, Mrs Patmore, Anna and Sarah O'Brien) speak with northern accents (either Yorkshire or Lancashire).

    However the filming locations are in the south of England: Highclere Castle in Berkshire (Downton Abbey exteriors and above-stairs interiors) and Bampton in Oxfordshire (Downton village - Mrs Crawley's house and Downton Cottage Hospital). Edit (Coming Soon)

  • Matthew is the Earl's third cousin once removed; this means that the Earl's great-great grandfather is Matthew's great-great-great grandfather. See

    The chart below shows how Matthew Crawley is related to Robert and Mary Crawley through Robert's 2X great grandfather who may have been the 3nd Earl of Grantham. James and Patrick Crawley are related closer to Robert and Mary through Robert's grandfather who may have been the 5th Earl of Grantham and were higher in line of succession than Matthew to the Earldom of Grantham.

    Matthew Crawley is the heir presumptive to the Earldom of Grantham and will be the 8th Earl of Grantham after the demise of Robert, the 7th Earl of Grantham. Matthew is heir presumptive and not heir apparent because he can be displaced by the birth of a male son to Robert and Cora, the Countess of Grantham.

    Update: After Matthew's death, his son, George, is now the heir presumptive. He can still be displaced by the birth of a male son to Robert and Cora. +-------------------+ <> 3rd Earl <> <> of Grantham <> <> (deceased) <> +-------------------+ <> +---------------------------------------+ <> <> +-------------------+ +-------------------+ <> 4th Earl <> <>Younger brother of <> <> of Grantham <>-----Siblings------<> 4th Earl <> <> (deceased) <> <> of Grantham <> +-------------------+ +-------------------+ <> <> <> <> +-------------------+ +-------------------+ <> 5th Earl <> <> Son of <> <> of Grantham <>----1st cousins----<> the above <> <> (deceased) <> <> (deceased) <> +-------------------+ +-------------------+ <> <> +---------------------------------------+ <> <> <> <> +-------------------+ +-------------------+ +-------------------+ <> Younger brother <> <> 6th Earl <> <> Son of <> <> of the 5th Earl <>-----Siblings------<> of Grantham <>----2nd cousins----<> the above <> <> of Grantham <> <> (deceased) <> <> (deceased) <> +-------------------+ +-------------------+ +-------------------+ <> <> <> <> <> <> +-------------------+ +-------------------+ +-------------------+ <> <> <> Robert Crawley <> <> Dr. Reginald <> <> James Crawley <>----1st cousins----<> 7th Earl <>----3rd cousins----<> Crawley <> <> (deceased) <> <> of Grantham <> <> (deceased) <> +-------------------+ +-------------------+ +-------------------+ <> / <> \ <> <> / <> \ <> <> 1st cousin once removed <> 3rd cousin once removed <> <> / <> \ <> <> / <> \ <> +-------------------+ +-------------------+ +-------------------+ <> <> <> <> <> Mr. Matthew <> <> Patrick Crawley <>----2nd cousins----<> Lady Mary Crawley <>----4th cousins----<> Crawley <> <> (presumed dead) <> <> <> <> (deceased) <> +-------------------+ +-------------------+ +-------------------+ <> <> +---------------------------------------+ <> +-------------------+ <> George Crawley <> <> Future 8th Earl <> <> of Grantham <> +-------------------+ Edit (Coming Soon)

  • This seems to change all the time, but seems to include Posh Spice, David Boreanaz, Mike Tyson, Angelica Huston, Heidi Montag, Spencer Pratt, Roger Moore and Ryan Gosling.

    Olivia Colman seems to be one of the few people who doesn't want to join the cast. (Although she played O'Brien in a spoof). Edit (Coming Soon)

  • A butler was originally in charge of the wine, but at this point organizes the maids and footmen and serves at dinner. In a larger household the housekeeper organizes the female servants and is of equal status of the butler, though the butler is ultimately in charge.The footman originally rode on the footplate of a carriage, and their main duty is to serve at dinner. A valet (pronounced valeT) looks after clothes, the equivalent to a dresser in the theatre). The female equivalent (eg O'Brien) is a lady's maid. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • It was very common amongst the aristocracy even as far up the class system as to include royalty. Upper class marriages were usually less about love and more about the acquisition of title, land or as in Lord Grantham's case money. Therefore a mistress was often taken to accommodate any romantic or sexual desires in one's life. While it wasn't very overtly expressed that a man had a mistress it would invariably be known and accepted in a type of don't speak, don't tell manner. Edit (Coming Soon)

  • The Cedar Tree followed the life of an aristocratic family but there the familiarity ends.The Cedar Tree was a 1970s afternoon soap with a budget to match and was set in the preceding years to World War 2. Edit (Coming Soon)


The FAQ items below may give away important plot points.

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