Inside: Lovely Dowager Countess of Grantham’s quotes that will make you laugh.

As a devoted fan of “Downton Abbey,” I’ve always been captivated by the Dowager Countess of Grantham, Violet Crawley. Her sharp tongue, quick wit, and surprising depth of character have made her one of the most beloved figures in the series.

Through her memorable quotes, Violet has not only provided comic relief but also imparted wisdom that often resonates beyond the show’s early 20th-century setting.

Photo of Maggie Smith playing the countess

In this article, I want to celebrate the brilliance of the Dowager Countess, exploring how her words have left an indelible mark on the hearts of viewers like myself. Join me as we delve into the wit and wisdom of one of television’s most iconic matriarchs. I haven’t laughed this hard since when I found those brother in law quotes!

Top Dowager Countess of Grantham’s Quotes

Every time I hear the Dowager Countess dismiss the modern world with a wave of her hand, I can’t help but chuckle. Let’s dive into some of her most delightful quips about the ever-changing landscape of the early 20th century. Check out these Dowager Countess of Grantham’s quotes.

1. “What is a weekend?”

2. “Is this an instrument of communication or torture?”

3. “Do you think that any of them know what the others are playing?” (referring to jazz musicians)

4. “Life is a game, where the player must appear ridiculous.”

5. “No life appears rewarding if you think about it too much.”

6. “Things are different in America, they live in Wig Wams.”

7. “I was right about my maid. She’s leaving – to get married! How could she be so selfish?”

8. “First electricity, now telephones. Sometimes I feel as if I’m living in an H.G. Wells novel.”

9. “I don’t dislike him. I just don’t like him. Which is quite different.”

10. “All this unbridled joy has given me quite an appetite.”

More Quotes By Your Favorite Countess

As a fan who has watched and rewatched every episode of ‘Downton Abbey,’ I’ve always been drawn to the Dowager Countess’s views on love and marriage(check out these twin flame quotes). Here’s a look at her most memorable musings on the matters of the heart. They are some of my favorite Dowager Countess of Grantham’s quotes.

11. “Vulgarity is no substitute for wit.”

12. “Principles are like prayers: Noble of course, but awkward at a party.”

Its the job of grandmothers to interfere. Photo of mountains cape with houses.

13. “Sarcasm is the lowest form of wit.”

14. “What simpletons men are.”

15. “I never argue. I explain.”

16. “Well, find a friendly judge.” (On corruption)

17. “At my age, one must ration one’s excitement.”

18. “I take that as a compliment.”

19. “I must have said it wrong.”

20. “A lack of compassion can be as vulgar as an excess of tears.”

21. “One can’t go to pieces at the death of every foreigner. We’d all be in a constant state of collapse whenever we opened a newspaper.”

22. “No Englishman would dream of dying in someone else’s house.”

23. “Hope is a tease, designed to prevent us accepting reality.”

24. “I’m a woman, Mary. I can be as contrary as I choose.”

25. “A woman of my age can face reality far better than most men.”

Hilarious Countess Quotes

There’s something about the way the Dowager Countess delivers her opinions on family dynamics that always leaves me in stitches. In this section, we’ll explore her wittiest insights into the Crawley family’s intricate relationships.

26. “Nothing succeeds like excess.”

27. “If you’re turning American on me, I’ll go downstairs.”

28. “You’re a woman with a brain and reasonable ability. Stop whining and find something to do.”

29. “It always happens when you give these little people power, it goes to their heads like strong drink.”

30. “You have a straightforward choice before you: You must choose either death or life.”

31. “I know several couples who are perfectly happy. Haven’t spoken in years.”

32. “I couldn’t have electricity in the house. I wouldn’t sleep a wink. All those vapors seeping about.”

33. “It’s the job of grandmothers to interfere.”

Im too old for an adventure. Photo of old architecture.

34. “I don’t believe in types, I believe in people.”

35. “Is it really 1912?”

36. “Alas, I am beyond impropriety.”

37. “I’ve always disliked that Mrs. Crawley. She’s like a homing pigeon. She finds our underbelly every time.”

38. “Don’t be defeatist, dear. It’s very middle class.”

39. “A peer in favor of reform is like a turkey in favor of Christmas.”

40. “I am not a romantic, but even I concede that the heart does not exist solely for the purpose to pump blood.”

More Iconic Quotes

I often find myself pondering the Dowager Countess’s wisdom on life’s trials and tribulations. Her words have a way of cutting through the noise and getting to the heart of the matter, as you’ll see in these selected Dowager Countess of Grantham’s quotes.

41. “The presence of strangers is our only guarantee of good behavior.”

42. “War has a way of distinguishing between the things that matter and the things that don’t.”

43. “Don’t be a defeatist, dear. It’s very middle-class.”

44. “It seems a pity to miss such a good pudding.”

45. “I know several couples who are perfectly happy. Haven’t spoken in years.”

46. “I’m not a romantic, but even I concede that the heart does not exist solely for the purpose of pumping blood.”

47. “A lady is known by her shoes and her gloves.”

48. “You are being tested. And you know what they say, my dear: Being tested only makes you stronger.”

49. “No guest should be admitted without the date of their departure settled.”

50. “We can’t have him assassinated. I suppose.”

51. “In my day, a lady was incapable of feeling physical attraction until she had been instructed to do so by her mama.”

52. “Nothing makes you hungrier or more tired than grief.”

53. “One way or another, everyone goes down the aisle with half the story hidden.”

54. “I’m not sure I know how to converse with an ironmonger.”

55. “I hanker for a simpler world. Is that a crime?”

If you're turning American on me, I'll go downstairs."

Most Memorable Dowager Countess of Grantham’s Quotes

The Dowager Countess has a unique talent for social commentary, often leaving me nodding in agreement or laughing out loud. Let’s take a closer look at her most pointed and hilariously accurate observations on society and its quirks. These are some of the most memorable Dowager Countess of Grantham’s quotes.

56. “I think accepting change is quite as important as defending the past.”

57. “Sometimes I feel as if I were living in an H.G. Wells novel.”

58. “It’s the job of grandmothers to meddle.”

59. “I have plenty of friends I don’t like.”

60. “Rosamund has no interest in French. If she wishes to be understood by a foreigner, she shouts.”

61. “Illness of any kind is hardly a thing to be encouraged in others.”

62. “Downton Abbey is being invaded by an army of housemaids.”

63. “A good motto is: ‘Don’t panic.'”

64. “I am never wrong about anything.”

65. “To be defeated is bad enough, but to be seen to be defeated is worse.”

66. “Edith, you are a Lady, not Toad of Toad Hall.”

67. “You have the mind of a pirate.”

68.”Give him a date for when Mary’s out of mourning. No one wants to kiss a girl in black.”

69. “I’m too old for an adventure.”

70. “Why does every day involve a fight with an American?”

Dowager Countess of Grantham quotes

As we bid adieu to our journey through the Dowager Countess of Grantham’s treasure trove of quips, one can’t help but feel a bit more aristocratic, if only in wit.

Violet Crawley has taught us that a well-timed barb can be more satisfying than afternoon tea on a rainy English day. Her words, like vintage wine, only get better with time. Whether she’s schooling us on the perils of modern technology or the peculiarities of foreign customs, her observations are as sharp as the crease in a well-ironed trouser.

So, the next time you find yourself in a social pickle, just ask yourself, ‘What would the Dowager Countess say?’ But remember, if you start referring to weekends with bewildered disdain, it might be time to step outside the manor and see the world as it is post-1920s. Until then, keep your wits sharp and your retorts sharper, just as our beloved Countess would have wanted.