In London Edith has a date with Bertie as well as appointing an editrix but Mary discovers her sister's secret, at the same time assuring Tom that Henry Talbot is merely a friend. Barrow finds out young footman Andy's weakness whilst a court case brings Baxter and Molesley closer together and Denker has cause to be grateful to Spratt. Violet invites health minister Neville Chamberlain to dinner in her plan to defeat Isobel and Cora and their supporters over the hospital but the event is overshadowed by a family emergency.
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Did You Know?
When Tom asks minister Chamberlain (a real historical figure) how Violet manage to invite him, Chamberlain mentions his brother-in-law Horace De Vere and Tom recalls a prank on a warship. The incident, "The Dreadnought Hoax", really happened in 1910 when De Vere and his circle of friends (including Virginia Woolf) boarded the Royal Navy's flagship HMS Dreadnought dressed as Abyssinian royals and demanded to see the ship. They received the treatment of a state visit, complete with a parade (where the wrong anthem was played) and a formal photograph, always speaking among themselves in a made-up language while De Vere "translated". On having any particular part of the ship pointed out the fake delegation would exclaim "bunga, bunga!" in admiration. The visit was cut short when a light drizzle threatened the makeup of the pranksters, but they disembarked without being discovered. As expected, the Royal Navy was a laughingstock for several months, and the admiral and officers involved had to endure yells of "bunga, bunga" whenever they went. While De Vere and his friends were summoned for punishment, there was none in the end. The prank was remembered, nevertheless, as during WW1 HMS Dreadnought managed to sink a German submarine and, reportedly, among the congratulatory telegrams, one arrived bearing the message "BUNGA, BUNGA". See more
At the dinner for Mr Chamberlain, the Earl of Grantham is suddenly taken ill, and is diagnosed with a perforated ulcer. This condition would, however, rarely present with major bleeding as shown here, but rather with intense abdominal pain. He is taken to the local, very small hospital and operated on. In a telephone call to Mr Carson, the Earl is said to have undergone a gastrectomy (removal of all or part of the stomach). This is a major surgical operation, taking in excess of 1-2 hours, which would require resources far beyond those of this hospital, and would also not be indicated for these symptoms. The preferred procedure in a perforated ulcer case under these circumstances would be to close the perforation, which is a much smaller and less dangerous operation. See more
Am I to blame if I have a passionate nature?
Performed by Jeremy Swift
[Spratt sings to himself while reading the newspaper] See more