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1 Beaverton World History- England Historical Biography
6 Burnside Great Britain- Social and Economic History
14 Local Warehouse World History- England General

Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey: The Lost Legacy of Highclere Castle


Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey: The Lost Legacy of Highclere Castle Cover

ISBN13: 9780770435622
ISBN10: 0770435629
Condition: Standard
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Reading Group Guide

The real-life inspiration for the hit PBS show Downton Abbey, Highclere Castle has been in the family of the Earl of Carnarvon since the seventeenth century. Later transformed into a stately Georgian mansion with intricate Gothic turrets, the castle was a center of political life during the reign of Queen Victoria. When nineteen-year-old Almina Wombwell became the 5th Countess of Carnarvon in 1895, her marriage marked perhaps the most enticing chapter in the castle’s rich history—an era marked by lavish gatherings attended by England’s most powerful families as they savored the zenith of their way of life.

Transporting readers to a vanished time and place, Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey tells the story of a spirited young woman who captured the hearts of English society despite her dubious status as the illegitimate daughter of phenomenally wealthy industrialist Alfred de Rothschild. Offering a solace from the ravages of the Great War, Lady Almina opened the doors of Highclere Castle to wounded military officers; their stories would be preserved in the castle’s rich archive of letters, photographs, and diaries. After the war, Lord Carnarvon’s enthusiasm for Egypt led to headline-making expeditions with Howard Carter, culminating in the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun; many of these antiquities became part of Highclere’s collection.

By turns a mesmerizing biography and a unique portrait of history, Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey will captivate your reading group. The questions that follow are designed to enrich your journey through Lady Almina’s world.

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Cheerbirdy, January 30, 2013 (view all comments by Cheerbirdy)
A delight to read. More than just a story of the history of Highclere Castle where Downton Abbey is filmed but a story of a remarkable family
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Product Details

Carnarvon, Fiona
Broadway Books
The Countess Of Carnarvon
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
8 x 5.2 x 1 in 0.7375 lb

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