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Anthony Strallan

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Anthony Strallan
Sir Anthony
Biographical information
Marital status Widower
Residence Locksley/Locksleigh House
Title(s) Sir Anthony Strallan, Baronet

Crippled old crock (by Alfred Nugent)

Physical information
Gender Male
Hair colour Fair
Family information
Family Maud, Lady Strallan (deceased wife)
Mrs. Chetwood (sister)
Mr Chetwood (brother-in-law)
Behind the scenes
Portrayed by Robert Bathurst
"Anthony Strallan is at least my age and as dull as paint. I doubt she'd want to sit next to him at dinner, let alone marry him."
Robert Crawley, Earl of Grantham on Mary and Sir Anthony Strallan[src]

Sir Anthony Strallana is a local landowner, widower of his wife Lady Maud Strallan and brother of Mrs. Chetwood. His wife died some time around 1912; he has no children. In the book, Downton Abbey The Complete Scripts: Season One, a portion of the dialogue in the script in the scene in which Cora and Robert discuss Mary's dilemma and Cora suggests Anthony Strallan as a potential suitor, Cora indicates that Strallan is probably over the grief of losing his first wife because it's been two years since Maud's death. Robert asks why Strallan and Cora replies: "He's got no children.  He needs an heir" (246). This bit was cut from the scene shown to viewers. Indeed, if Strallan had a son, the son would be the potential suitor, most likely, and if he had a daughter, the Crawley daughters would have been acquainted.  No mention was made in the show of any children. 

The one reminiscence we have of Strallan as a younger man is when he recalls to Edith--who has just heard of the Duchess of Marlborough's divorce and relates the news to Strallan--a time in 1896, when he had attended a party at Lady Londonderry's and had seen the Duchess, when she first came from America; he tells Edith that the Duchess was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. The scene served to illustrate--in the pivotal 3.3 episode--the age difference between Edith and Anthony. [1]

In 1914, Sir Anthony was invited to Downton Abbey, as Cora Crawley, Countess of Grantham wished for Lady Mary Crawley to marry before any scandal arose from the death of Mr Pamuk. When Mary spent a large amount of the evening talking to Matthew Crawley, and later turned down a drive in Strallan's car, he became interested in Lady Edith Crawley, and she in him.

Sometime later that year, but before the outbreak of war, Strallan visits Downton shortly after having returned from the Continent where he had been engaged in high-level diplomatic talks. It is not known what position Strallan has in the British government but it seems an important one him having been sent to Austria and Germany only months before the outbreak of the Great War. Also, from what he tells Edith, he seems somewhat familiar with Kaiser Bill.

Turning up to Downton unannounced one day, Sir Anthony invited Edith to a concert, much to Mary's disbelief. He began to regularly drop by to see Edith and take her for spins in his new Rolls-Royce. After Edith's announcement that she believed Anthony was going to propose to her at the garden party, Mary made sure to talk to him beforehand, saying that Edith thought an old bore was going to propose to her. Feeling distraught out of the belief that Edith did not love him and thought him a bore, he excused himself from the party leaving Edith confused and terribly upset. War is declared later at the same garden party.

Shortly before Christmas 1919, Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham invites Strallan to tea with Edith where they discover to their surprise that he had been shot during the First World War and, as a result, had lost the use of his right arm (Strallan had previously refused three offers to some shooting with the male members of Edith's family and some guests). Violet herself expresses regret in reuniting them, saying to her daughter Lady Rosamund Painswick that Edith would spend the rest of her life as a nursemaid if she married Anthony.

In 1920, Edith starts to see more of Strallan. At a dinner party, he saves the day when Larry Grey, former suitor to Lady Sybil Branson, being jealous of her newly wedded husband Tom Branson, spikes his drink out of sheer malice, causing him to embarrass the family at dinner: it is Strallan who exposes the crime and the culprit. Edith is suitably impressed. Soon afterwards she says that she would like to pursue a romantic relationship, but he tells her that he is far too old for her, not to mention crippled, and that she should forget him and find someone who has "his life ahead of him." However, Edith does not agree. Robert Crawley, at his mother's behest, asks Anthony to stay away from her when he realizes that Edith is quite serious about him. Gallantly, Anthony tells him that he will, if that is what Robert wants and so writes a letter to Edith telling her this, devastating her. However, seeing her distress, Robert relents.

Strallan and Edith get engaged. Edith says that she loves him not in spite of the fact that he needs to be looked after, but because of it. She tells him that she wants to make him her life's work. He accompanies the Crawley's on the picnic to Eryholme and takes Isobel Crawley and the Dowager Countess Violet Crawley in his car. He remarks that Edith is a speed - fiend and he tells Violet that he is going to try to keep up with her. He tries to keep the details of the honeymoon from Edith, but she learns that he has arranged for them to go to Rome, Florence, and Venice. One month after the engagement[2], on their wedding day Anthony, out of care for Edith's well being, abandons her at the altar, telling her that she must not waste her life on him - which Violet says is the "smartest thing he's said in months" - but leaves Edith shattered. Anthony was visibly torn and upset as he left the church.

Notes Edit

  • a Anthony was possibly born in 1865 or earlier. Anthony's birthdate is unknown, however in Episode 1.05 Robert (born 1866) says that Anthony "is at least my age". Also, in Episode 3.02, Robert tells Edith that Anthony is "a quarter of a century too old" for her; 25 years before her birthdate in 1894 is 1869, but going with Robert's age (born in 1866) means he may be rounding.

AppearancesEdit

Appearances and Mentions
Series 1 Episode 1 Episode 2 Episode 3 Episode 4 Episode 5
Appears
Episode 6
Appears
Episode 7
Appears
   
Series 2 Episode 1 Episode 2 Episode 3 Episode 4 Episode 5 Episode 6 Episode 7 Episode 8 Christmas Special
Appears
   
Series 3 Episode 1
Appears
Episode 2
Appears
Episode 3
Appears
Episode 4 Episode 5 Episode 6 Episode 7 Episode 8
Mentioned
Christmas Special
   
Series 4 Episode 1 Episode 2 Episode 3 Episode 4
Mentioned
Episode 5 Episode 6 Episode 7 Episode 8 Christmas Special

ReferencesEdit

  1. Episode 3.03
  2. Edith says, in Episode 3.02, that she can "have it ready in a month" meaning that it is one month later.

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