Downton Abbey Season 4 Story Recap

Downton Abbey Recaps

Downton Abbey: A New Era is now showing in the UK and releases in U.S. cinemas on May 20. If you’re interested in the new Downton Abbey movie, you may want to brush up on everything that’s happened at Downton so far.

We’ll be providing Downton Abbey recaps of all seasons, plus a recap of the 2019 Downton Abbey movie. This article details what happened in Downton Abbey season 4.

Downton Abbey Season 4 Recap

How does Mary cope with Matthew’s death?

Months after Matthew’s death, Mary and Isobel are deep in mourning and can’t seem to connect with the rest of the world. Violet encourages Mary to be involved in running Downton’s estate. Mary eventually moves on from the mourning period to help run the estate with Tom.

Does Matthew leave the Downton estate to Mary?

Mary finds a letter from Matthew, which states that he wants Mary to inherit everything of his. The letter is Matthew’s will, making Mary part-owner of the estate.

Who attacks Anna at Downton?

Cora throws a house party at Downton Abbey, which one Lord Tony Gillingham attends with his valet Alex Green. While a concert takes place upstairs, Anna makes her way downstairs. Green follows her. Cornering her while she is alone, he beats and rapes her.

Mrs. Hughes finds her afterward, but Anna hides what happened from everyone else. She’s afraid that Bates would kill Green if he found out about it. Eventually, however, Mrs. Hughes tells Bates anyway. He can’t lash out at Green, though, because he doesn’t learn that he was the abuser.

Does Lord Gillingham propose to Mary?

Lord Tony Gillingham is a recently-appointed viscount and old family friend of the Crawleys. When he attends the house party at Downton, he and Mary rekindle an old bond. Despite his impending engagement to heiress Mabel Lane Fox, he’s taken with Mary.

Gillingham later visits Downton again to propose to Mary. She can’t accept because she still grieves for Matthew. Soon after, Gillingham announces his engagement to Mabel Lane Fox.

What happens to Michael Gregson?

Edith continues to see Michael Gregson. He talks of moving to Germany and becoming a citizen, as it will be easier to divorce his wife there.

Before he leaves the country for Munich, he and Edith spend the night together. But once Gregson leaves, he vanishes. Edith wonders if all he wanted from her was sex.

Does Edith get pregnant?

With no word from Gregson, Edith goes to a doctor to find out if she carries his child. When she discovers she is pregnant, Violet and Rosamund try to help Edith come up with a plan. They want to sent her to Switzerland for a stay with an aunt, but Edith wants to give the baby to Downton’s tenant farmer, Timothy Drewe, for him to raise with his wife.

Does Alfred leave Downton?

Alfred decides to leave Downton after a lot of drama between Ivy, Jimmy, Daisy, and himself. His heart is broken when Ivy chooses Jimmy over him, so he decides to prepare for an exam to get into cooking school. Daisy helps him, despite loving him and wanting him to stay. When he’s accepted, she tearfully says her goodbye.

Alfred later comes for a visit at Downton. This time, Ivy actually shows interest in him. Later, he proposes marriage to her, but she declines. During his next visit, he finally takes notice of Daisy, but she only treats him as a friend.

Who is Charles Blake?

Evelyn Napier (a former suitor of Mary’s who introduced her to Pamuk) returns to Downton with Mr. Charles Blake to work on a government report about estates like Downton. Napier once again sets his cap at Mary, while Mary and Blake butt heads with each other.

After Downton purchases pigs, Blake and Mary go to check on the animals. Finding the pigs dehydrated, they both get into the mud to help them and start to playfully throw mud at each other. Their disdain shifts to interest in each other, and they stay up late that night talking.

Whenever Lord Gillingham returns to Downton, having called off his engagement to Mabel, Mary finds herself with not one suitor, but three: Evelyn Napier, Charles Blake, and Tony Gillingham.

Does Rose marry Jack Ross?

A bandleader by the name of Jack Ross courts Rose. At first, they see each other in secret. Jack is a Black man, and interracial relationships are frowned upon in Rose’s society.

But Mary catches the two of them alone at Lord Grantham’s birthday party, where Jack was performing. They later become engaged. When Mary visits Jack in London, however, he says he will end their engagement. He doesn’t want others to shun Rose for marrying him.

Does Bates kill Alex Green?

Whenever Lord Gillingham returns to Downton Abbey, Green returns with him as his valet. Bates and Mary soon discover that Green was Anna’s rapist. Mary then implores Gillingham to fire his valet, which he does.

Bates takes off work the next day, claiming he needs to go to York. While Bates is gone, it comes to light that Green died in traffic at the Picadilly Circus.

The few who know Anna’s situation wonder if Bates could have murdered Green.

What happened in the Downton Abbey 2013 Christmas Special?

The Downton Abbey 2013 Christmas Special picks up one year after the events of the last episode. Alex Green has long been dead, but Mrs. Hughes only just finds a train ticket in Bates’ coat pocket that could have put him in the same place as Green when he died. She tells Mary, but Mary burns the ticket because of Bates’ loyalty to her family.

Branson gets closer to Sarah Bunting, a teacher he met a year ago who subscribes to the same liberal politics as he does. Robert becomes suspicious when they are spotted together near the bedrooms.

Meanwhile, Edith has a baby girl named Marigold while in Switzerland. She initially leaves the child with a couple there, but later takes Marigold back. Wanting her close by, Edith gives Marigold to Timothy Drewe and asks him to raise her.


That’s the story of Downton Abbey season 4 in a nutshell. Stay tuned for further story recaps in preparation for Downton Abbey: A New Era.

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