In the dying days of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, an impoverished aristocrat marries into a wealthy Jewish family.






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Series cast summary:
Harold Berens Harold Berens ...  Grand-Uncle Emil 5 episodes, 1975
Claire Bloom ...  Sarah Merz 5 episodes, 1975
Leonard Fenton Leonard Fenton ...  Friedrich Merz 5 episodes, 1975
John Fraser ...  Julius von Felden 5 episodes, 1975
Irene Handl ...  Grandmama Merz 5 episodes, 1975
Richard Hurndall ...  Gottlieb 5 episodes, 1975
Jack Lynn Jack Lynn ...  Cousin Markwald 5 episodes, 1975
Flora Robson ...  Narrator 5 episodes, 1975
Cyril Shaps ...  Grandpapa Merz 5 episodes, 1975
Robin Bailey Robin Bailey ...  Count Bernin 4 episodes, 1975
Jeremy Brett ...  Eduard Merz 4 episodes, 1975
Angela Pleasence ...  Clara von Bernin / ... 4 episodes, 1975
Geoffrey Whitehead ...  Gustavus von Felden 4 episodes, 1975


In the dying days of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, an impoverished aristocrat marries into a wealthy Jewish family.

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Release Date:

29 March 1975 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


(5 episodes)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

An outstanding BBC series which deserves to be seen again.
17 June 2006 | by mkb-8See all my reviews

A Legacy was adapted from the fine novel by the late Sybil Bedford, a well born German woman who made her home in England. It tells the story of an aristocratic Bavarian family in the years before the First World War and the tensions they encounter in the militaristic atmosphere of an expansionist Imperial Germany.

The older son of the family, played by John Fraser, is able to lead an artistic carefree life but his younger brother, played by Christopher Guard, is consigned to a spartan military academy where he falls foul of the Prussian instructors and his brutal fellow cadets.

The great comic actress Irene Handl was featured in a serious role as the ancient grandmother of the family and acquitted herself well. The series was broadcast in the days before the domestic VCR so my critique is based purely upon memory. This is another of those BBC dramas from the golden age that now appears to be lost in the vaults and is crying out for another airing.

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