Lady Catherine and the Real Downton Abbey

Lady Catherine and the Real Downton Abbey Highclere Castle has a new resident the daughter in law of Lady Almina an American beauty from New York and a descendant of famous American families Catherine Wendell first met Lord Porchester Porch

  • Title: Lady Catherine and the Real Downton Abbey
  • Author: Fiona Carnarvon
  • ISBN: 1444762125
  • Page: 472
  • Format: Paperback
  • Highclere Castle has a new resident, the daughter in law of Lady Almina, an American beauty from New York and a descendant of famous American families.Catherine Wendell first met Lord Porchester Porchey , son of Lady Almina, the heir to Highclere and 6th Earl of Carnarvon, in Gibraltar At just 19 and utterly entrancing, she had already received many proposals of marriageHighclere Castle has a new resident, the daughter in law of Lady Almina, an American beauty from New York and a descendant of famous American families.Catherine Wendell first met Lord Porchester Porchey , son of Lady Almina, the heir to Highclere and 6th Earl of Carnarvon, in Gibraltar At just 19 and utterly entrancing, she had already received many proposals of marriage and immediately caught 24 year old Porchey s discerning eye.They married in 1922, and after the unexpected death of Almina s husband, the 5th Earl of Carnarvon, they moved into Highclere Castle Beset by death duties and money problems, the Earl and Countess were unsure they could keep Highclere Thanks to the sale of the decade at Christies Auction House, hundreds of cherished paintings went under the hammer, from a Leonardo da Vinci to works by Reynolds, Gainsborough, and Romney Porchey even sold the famous family pearls By 1926 Catherine and Porchey knew they could stay.Over the next few years, the young couple entertained at Highclere, sharing it with other royalty and friends from London society Catherine was much loved by the staff and adored by her husband and two young children Although Almina still occasionally came to stay, Catherine s own American mother, Mrs Jacob Wendell, was the most regular visitor.By 1936, Catherine and Porchey s marriage had become increasingly troubled Devastated, Catherine bravely unraveled her marriage Porchey hastily traveled to New York to marry his new lover, who, however, ran off the night before the wedding with a Hollywood mogul.Now in London with her children, Catherine fell in love with a handsome and charming man, whom she married in 1938 Porchey continued at Highclere, having to find new staff the old staff accompanied Catherine to London and marrying the famous Austrian actress Tilly Losch on the day war broke out in 1939 Catherine s husband joined the navy while Porchey s new wife quickly left for America.Highclere Castle was turned into a home for evacuee children as well as lodging for soldiers Porchey joined the war effort as an army adjutant later a liaison officer and was commended by the Americans stationed near Highclere Catherine and Porchey s son Henry also joined the war in 1943 Like other wives and mothers, Catherine endured the unbearable stress of waiting for news of two beloved people in her life.Using copious materials including diaries and scrapbooks from the castle s archive, the Countess of Carnarvon brings alive a very modern story in a beautiful and famous setting, paying particular attention not just to the goings on upstairs, but also to the butler footmen and other staff whose lives downstairs kept the Castle moving forward into the twentieth century.

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      Posted by:Fiona Carnarvon
      Published :2019-09-10T14:35:59+00:00


    About “Fiona Carnarvon

    • Fiona Carnarvon

      Note This is the listing for the 8th Countess of Carnarvon.A former auditor for Coopers Lybrand, Lady Carnarvon is the wife of George Herbert, 8th Earl of Carnarvon Today, she manages affairs at Highclere Castle, home of the worldwide television drama Downton Abbey, including overseeing its grounds and gardens and many special events such as the Egyptian Exhibition in the cellars of the Castle.Fascinated by Highclere s history, Lady Carnarvon has written four books The first two are about the 5th Earl of Carnarvon, who discovered King Tutankhamun s tomb with Howard Carter in 1922 Her latest are New York Times Bestseller Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey The Lost Legacy of Highclere, and Lady Catherine and the Real Downton Abbey.



    450 thoughts on “Lady Catherine and the Real Downton Abbey

    • Quite interesting, especially in the light of having just read The Visitors and spent a little time with the 5th Earl of Carnarvon, father of this one. Another contributing factor in my enjoyment was my passion for Downton Abbey. I was fascinated by how many of the plot twists in that story were ripped right from the true experiences of these people and their magnificent estate. The book is historically accurate in every detail that I could personally verify. Lady Carnarvon had access to all the [...]



    • Misdemeanours and Sloppy ErrorsThe basis of this elegantly written sketch on the life and times of Catherine Wendell, the Sixth Countess of Carnarvon - with a fleeting glance to Tilly Losch, the other Sixth Countess- is that it’s another Highclere spin off to cash-in on its television fame. Both women married Porchey- the Sixth Earl, who spent his life hunting, shooting and flirting. The Earl was a rascal who rode race horses and was an over active sex pest to womankind. The Carnarvons display [...]


    • Following the first book, Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey: The Lost Legacy of Highclere Castle, I was looking forward to the next book, which covered the next generation of the Carnarvon family. While I did like the stories of Porchey and Catherine, most of the book was just a scandal sheet. Items of interest -- Porchey's involvement with the Royal family, especially in the Edward VIII/Wallis Simpson scandal, divorce among the aristocracy, and two inserts of black and white photos, a map [...]


    • Find this and other reviews at: flashlightcommentary.Fiona Carnarvon's Lady Catherine, the Earl, and the Real Downton Abbey fell into my lap. My mother had learned of and recommended the book's predecessor after I'd turned her onto the television series, but I hadn't found time to pick it up. That said, my curiosity had been sparked, so it wasn't all that surprising when I jumped at the opportunity to review book two. Unfortunately, my optimistic expectations crumbled when face to face with real [...]


    • I gave this book 2 stars because I just couldn't force myself to finish it. Reading the dictionary would have been more interesting. Facts. Facts. Facts. I found it very hard to get 'connected' with any of the wealthy people who lived at Highclere during this time period. Perhaps the author could have thrown in more human interest stories.


    • Lady Catherine, The Earl, and the Real Downton Abbey, by the current Countess Carnarvon, Fiona, is a must for any Anglophile. Particularly, those who are addicted to Downton Abbey. This is the second book by Countess Carnarvon. The first was 2011's Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey : The Lost Legacy of Highclere Castle.Both books center around the Countess of the title. Lady Almina was the chatelaine during the first World War, and was the mother of the titular Earl of the second book. She [...]


    • This well researched book reveals an interesting glimpse into the inhabitants of Highclere Castle, the site of Julian Fellowes' Downton Abbey that aired on PBS. As revealed in the TV series, the book portrays the life of the privileged, wealthy class and the staff. The book does include numerous photographs that I found fascinating.Now I must add a 'real' trip to Highclere Castle. ( KUYH's Travel challenge for August.England)


    • Catherine Wendell grew up in America, but after a family tragedy, her mother uprooted the whole family to England. While on vacation, she meets Porchey or Lord Porhester, the man who is eventually going to become the 6th Earl of Carnarvon. Porchey's father, the famous Lord Carnarvon who discovered King Tut's tomb along with Howard Carter, died suddenly making Porchey the next Earl rather quickly. Although he should find a rich American bride to help maintain and pay for Highclere Castle, his anc [...]


    • If You Love Downton Abbey, You’ll Adore “Lady Catherine, the Earl, and the Real Downton Abbey”If you, like me, watch enthralled as each new episode of “Downton Abbey” arrives, you’ll love this book written by the current Countess of Carnarvon. This is one of those wonderful books where the facts are almost better than the fiction. Exceptionally well-written and entertaining, “Lady Catherine, the Earl, and the Real Downton Abbey” picks up the story of the Earls of Carnarvon in the [...]


    • This one wasn't nearly as entertaining as the other of the pair about Highclere, the real Downton Abbey, because this generation of English aristocracy isn't as fascinating. This earl comes across as a philandering, egotistical stinker, and his lady Catherine as one of his victims just isn't strong enough to carry the entire book.


    • I received this book courtesy of the publisher for reviewing purposes.Though certainly fascinating and well-researched, I wasn't able to connect with this book. I likely would have enjoyed it more if I had read the previous installment before starting this one. I may purchase the book and try again once I have done so.


    • I loved itI am reading the books in the wrong order as I have started the one about Lady Almina now. This is the generation BEFORE Lady Catherine


    • Imagine you are at a dinner party. You are sat by a rather nice lady with some aristocratic history. She starts telling you all about her family. At first it's really interesting and you are just fascinated, but by the time the main dish is served, she's gone through the important stuff, and now she's telling you about people you don't know and trying to white wash obvious scandals. You find yourself chanting "I don't care. I don't care. I DON'T CARE" in your brain while nodding.This is the book [...]


    • 3.5 stars - Another fascinating glimpse into life and times at Highclere Castle during the 1920s and 30s. Highlights include the military campaigns of WW II and some details about the castle owners and occupants with their personal tragedies and triumphs.The author uses primary research material from Highclere Castle archives to tell the story of Lady Catherine (Wendell), an American woman who marries "Porchy" the 6th Earl of Carnarvon. Definitely a book that fans of the PBS drama "Downton Abbey [...]


    • Starting this book I had to laugh several times since these stinking filthy rich aristocrats did nothing with their time other than chase one another around the world. It's such a strange world to step into. Lord Porchester ("Porchey") was the most amusing. He was so in love with being an aristocrat that he never really became a grown up. I read this book while also reading Servants, by Lucy Lethbridge, and found the contrast between the two sets of people living in these grand country houses ri [...]


    • Meet the real family who reside in Highclere Castle, the fabulous home featured in Downton Abbey. The Castle has been in the Carnarvon family since 1679, and was remodeled in 1839-42. The 5th Earl of Carnarvon was an Egyptologist who, with his partner, Howard Carter, discovered King Tut's tomb. Upon his death in 1923, Porchey (short for Lord Porchester), and his American wife Catherine become the 6th Earl and Countess of Carnarvon. This is their story! The book is written by Fiona, the 8th Count [...]


    • I justuldn't finish it. I'm a little disappointed, honestly--I was sure this one had so much potential, both as a book, and from a marketing standpoint. Hello? Who doesn't want to read more about Downton Abbey?? I do!Obviously, I didn't expect the "real" Downton to be like the show (soapy and full of intrigue and death and sexytimes). And as much as I like to believe that everyone has a story worth telling, I've come to the conclusion that not everyone's story will fill a novel. Eep. The portion [...]


    • The second book about the "Real Downton Abbey". Enjoyed it. TImeframe from the end of WWI through WWII. The marriage of Catherine and "Porchy" didn't go as well as the marriage of Porchy's parents. Still good and bad parts to this. Also Catherine lived in a time where divorce was perhaps not quite the sin it would have been for Almina. Not as grand a tale as the first book because no making the castle into a hospital and no finding of King Tut's tomb. However, it was still a good book to read an [...]


    • Having been a Downton Abbey fan myself, I could not pass by this book. It gives insight to what Highclere Castle was like during the 20s and 30s. This book gave the enjoyment of sinking into a great fiction book on a Sunday afternoon while being non-fiction itself. Not an easy task but this book did it for me! A must buy for any fan of the show or someone wanting a glimpse into a different way of life gone by.


    • I listened to as much of this as I could bear. It's not bad, just slow and boring and pointless. No one in this book did anything remotely interesting or was of any real importance. If they hadn't been tied to the building that inspired Downtown Abbey, they wouldn't merit a second's thought. I'm not even going to feel bad about counting it as read after only slogging through 2/3 of it because it was work just to get that far.


    • Interesting story. Things don't always work out as neatly in real life as they do in fiction. And saying that "things work out neatly" in the fiction of Downton Abbey is a bit of a stretch. Enjoyed it, but not gripping.


    • I thought this book was an interesting glimpse into a class of people whose lifestyle I will never understand. I found the book enjoyable.Thanks to Crown Publishing, via Netgalley for letting me read this in exchange for an unbiased review.


    • Oy, no idea why so many people write biographies and memoirs when they really haven't done anything worth talking about. Apparently "Porchey" wrote two memoirsTWO! Cocktail parties, pretty clothes, affairs, shooting things the TV show is much more interesting than the truth.


    • A great read on the recent individuals who have lived at Highclere. A story of 2 halls, with the first being focuses on Catherine and her upbringing and marriages and the second about the family in the war.If you like recent English history then this is a great read.


    • A wonderful and accurate of English history during the roaring 20s! A fabulous follow up to Lady Almina. Just an added bonus for all of us Downton Abbey lovers!



    • The basis of this elegantly written sketch on the life and times of Catherine Wendell, the Sixth Countess of Carnarvon - with a fleeting glance at the dancer Tilly Losch, the other Sixth Countess- is that it’s another Highclere spin off to cash-in on its television fame. Both women married Porchey- the Sixth Earl, who spent his life hunting, shooting and flirting. The Earl was a rascal who rode race horses and was an over active sex pest to womankind. The Carnarvons display courage in declarin [...]


    • I truly enjoyed this audiobook and will remember this narrator for future books because I liked her voice. I loved hearing about the actual history of Highclere and those who lived there. Some facts were interesting (sad, actually) to me that were not added in Downton Abbey, such as all footmen being called Charles, regardless of what their actual names were to make it easier for the family. I loved hearing about Katherine and other family members but Porchey (6th Earl of Carnarvon) I dreaded he [...]


    • I wanted so bad to give this book more than three stars, but for me, there was way too much time spent on the WWII battles in the last portion of the story. I understand the son fought in some of the battles and was quite a soldier. It just seemed too far removed from the Abbey. All in all, however, I ejnjoyed this book. Death taxes in England must have been unbelievably harsh, I hope they are not still like this. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in the good sized estates and how [...]


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