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A chronicle of the lives of the Crawley family and their servants, beginning in the years leading up to World War I.

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Top Rated TV #94 | Won 3 Golden Globes. Another 47 wins & 177 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Series cast summary:
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 Robert Crawley, Earl of Grantham (52 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Lady Edith Crawley (52 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Charles Carson (52 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 John Bates (52 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Lady Mary Crawley (52 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Anna Bates / ... (52 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Thomas Barrow (52 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Mrs. Hughes (52 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Cora Crawley, Countess of Grantham (52 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Daisy Mason / ... (52 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Mrs. Patmore (52 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Isobel Crawley (51 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Joseph Molesley (46 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Tom Branson (45 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Dr. Clarkson (34 episodes, 2010-2015)
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 Sarah O'Brien (25 episodes, 2010-2012)
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 Matthew Crawley (25 episodes, 2010-2012)
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 Baxter (23 episodes, 2013-2015)
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 Lady Rose MacClare (21 episodes, 2012-2015)
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Storyline

Lord Grantham sees his family heritage, especially the grand country home Downton Abbey, as his mission in life. The death of his heir aboard the Titanic means distant cousin Matthew Crawley, a Manchester lawyer, suddenly is next in line and accepts moving onto the vast estate with his even more modernist, socially engaged mother, who clashes with his lordship's domineering, conservative mother, the dowager countess. Marrying off the daughters is another concern. Meanwhile, the butler presides over a staff which serves the family, but also lead most of their entire lives in the servants' quarters, intriguing amongst themselves. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

War changes everything

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

9 January 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Masterpiece Classic  »

Company Credits

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Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to Julian Fellowes, the parts played by Hugh Bonneville, Brendan Coyle and Maggie Smith were written for the actors that played them. See more »

Goofs

Although Robert and Cora Crawley both have blue eyes, their daughter, Mary, has brown eyes. This was thought biologically impossible in the Davenport Model (1907), although not very common, two blue-eyed parents can produce children with brown eyes. Eye color is a complex trait that depends on the state of several interacting genes. The gene that usually decides the issue (blue eyes or brown eyes) is the OCA2 gene on chromosome 15. But it comes in different strengths. A person with a weak form of the OCA2 gene will have blue eyes. Likewise a person with a strong form will have brown eyes, but individuals also have other eye-color genes that each has a say in the final eye-color outcome. For example, if one of these lesser genes is strong, it can make the weak form (blue) of OCA2 work much more effectively - almost like the strong form (brown). Then the eye color may be brown. In fact, the resulting color can be any shade of brown, hazel, green or blue depending on the interactions. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Only Connect: Episode #11.8 (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

O Mio Babbino Caro
(uncredited)
Written by Giacomo Puccini
Performed by Kiri Te Kanawa
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Completely captivating
16 January 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I was hooked after the first five minutes and come heaven, hell or high water, I was going to see Downton Abbey twice, the second time to pick up the points which I knew would be too fast, and possibly convoluted, to follow the first time round. I have watched Masterpiece since the inaugural with Alistair Cooke, and I can't remember anything as engaging and entertaining as this. As a cousin of an English family with deep affection for the monarchy and respect for the aristocracy, my perspective is an odd mix of Democratic ideals, old-time Republican values and curiosity about and appreciation of the social structure which prevailed so long in England. Downton Abbey appears to present a very balanced depiction of the social, political, economic and historical forces which drove the lives and fortunes of the classes and produced strange and almost incomprehensible behavior to comply with an unwritten, all-pervasive code. I am completely fascinated by the events and reactions and what would appear to be almost puppet-like behavior on occasion. I pray for a sequel.


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