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Not the first page. My poor niece never uses one word when twenty will do.
—Violet showing Cora a letter from Susan, Marchioness of Flintshire

Episode 1.06 is the sixth episode of the first season of Downton Abbey, and the sixth episode overall.

Sybil expresses her interest in politics to Lord Grantham, who isn't all pleased to hear of her venture to the debate, and things take a drastic turn when she's injured at the by-election results. While, Mary Crawley and Matthew Crawley continue to get closer leading to a proposal of marriage much to Cora and Violet's delight, though the events surrounding Mr. Pamuk's death may put a spanner in the works. Thomas continues his campaign to get rid of Mr. Bates with the help of O'Brien and a misguided Daisy, by accusing him of stealing the wine from the cellar. Set in May 1914.[1]


Bates lets it slip to Robert that Sybil went to a political rally, with Branson. The news that she wants to offer her support is met with bewilderment from her father and disgust from her grandmother. Cora’s position is less clear.

Gwen is despondent regarding her luck with her attempts to become a secretary. Sybil urges Gwen not to give up her dreams. As far as Sybil’s dreams are concerned, she is frustrated when Robert forbids her to attend the High Sherriff’s reading of the election results as she realises she is a natural Suffragette.

However, she is determined and she ensnares an unsuspecting and love struck Branson into her plan of how to get there. Mary’s horse is lame and William offers to look at it. He and Mary discuss his strong family bond and how proud his mother is, to see him a footman at Downton. Mary finds she likes the young man and when Isobel informs her that William’s mother is gravely ill, but that she does not want William to know or to visit her, Mary makes up her mind to overturn this, despite Isobel’s and Cora’s protests that this would go against his mother wishes. Sir Anthony Strallan calls to see if Mary would like to try out his new automobile. She claims to be busy, so Edith accompanies him instead. Thomas and O'Brian accuse Mr. Bates of stealing the wine, despite it being Thomas' doing.

Cast list[]


  1. Downton Abbey: The Complete Scripts, Season One, page 294. However, as a historical note, in real life there was no Ripon by-election in 1914.

External links[]

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