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The Cranford Mystery (2009)

Those who have watched this series ( ), based on the Elizabeth Gaskell novels, may have been intrigued by Imelda Staunton’s character, Miss Pole. Could she be, albeit fictionally, a Plantagenet descendant?

Unfortunately not. Whilst descendants of the Countess of Salisbury through the female line abound (the principal surnames having been Hastings, Barrington* and Stafford*), the male line died out when the last two brothers (Arthur and Geoffrey) were murdered at the Farnese palace in Rome in 1605 and 1619. This link will explain more:

Sir Richard Pole, the Countess’ husband, had no brothers but one sister so any Pole in the Victorian era could only be descended from a cousin, if at all.

* These lines persist but the surnames have changed again.


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