If you ask me...my new book contains everything you'll ever need to know about Downton Abbey

"Iron your own shoelaces, Lady Mary, you lazy bitch" and other lines Downton characters probably haven't said

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The Independent Online

If you ask me, now that the latest series of Downton Abbey has come to an end, I would like to present my Downtonopedia, which contains all the facts you will ever need to know about Downton collected into one slim volume which, I admit, could have been fatter, and would have been, if only I’d been able to sustain my interest. Still, here is an excerpt, just to give you a flavour... 

What The Characters Are Least Likely To Say, More’s The Pity:

Bates: It’s a fair cop. I did it!

Anna: I saw him!’

O’Brien: Whoever it was, it wasn’t Thomas!

Lord Grantham: To hell with the status quo.

Anna: Iron your own shoelaces, Lady Mary, you lazy bitch.

Lady Cora: My whiny little voice and constipated little face irritate even me.

Carson: It does not matter from which side you serve the soup, you dolt.

Lady Mary: Enough with the agricultural talk, Matthew. As it is, you’ve sent my ovaries to sleep.

O’Brien: What’s overheard through the heating duct stays in the heating duct.

Matthew: A boner!

Lord Grantham: I’m afraid I’m not going to interrupt proceedings to announce an important political development or the invention of the Breville sandwich toaster, just so you know.

Tom: The Irish potato famine was nothing, in the big scheme of things.

Carson: As I appear to be having one of my less stoic, redoubtable days, I plan to take myself and my big head to the nearest meadow where I will dance naked with bells.

Lord Grantham: A fast-track promotion scheme for homosexuals in my employ! I’ve never heard such a thing!

Dowager Violet: Today, I will try not to say anything that could be embroidered on a cushion. 

O’Brien: What bar of soap?

Lady Edith: Was I spitefully lively once?

Lady Mary: Was I interesting once?

Julian Fellowes: I’m off to bed early, as I seem to be suffering from narrative strain.

If you would like to see more of this book, which includes, for example, a section on What Downton Most Needs – a revolving door to accommodate Bates’s endless cycles of redemption and exile would be most helpful, for instance – it is available from The Independent Bookshop at £790. Steep, but includes a pull-out map of the village and the best place to buy buttons, in full colour.