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Playing Matchmaker for Downton Abbey's Lovelorn Servants

Sophie McShera | Photo Credits: Carnival Film & Television Limited for Masterpiece

“You know the trouble with you lot? You’re all in love with the wrong people.” — the wisdom of Mrs. Patmore

Not every servant on Downton Abbey can have the fairy tale romance of Bates and Anna (false murder rap and imprisonment aside), and a servant in the 1920s is further constrained by his/her status. For every Gwen (Rose Leslie) who opened up her romantic prospects by becoming a secretary, sadly there’s a fallen Ethel (Amy Nuttall) who’s forced into prostitution after having an affair with a military man. What’s one of the serving class to do but flirt awkwardly with one of their own in hopes of safely pairing off?

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