Character Bio: Sir Richard Carlisle

Powerful, ruthless and rich—these are a few words that come to mind as Sir Richard Carlisle attempts to force his way into the Crawley family in season two.

“But don’t ever cross me. Do you understand? Never.” – Sir Richard


Sir Richard Carlisle, Lady Mary’s newest suitor and newspaper tycoon, belongs to a new society that expanded toward the end of the nineteenth century. Sir Richard has an obvious sense of entitlement to the royalty found in the Crawley family, as shown in his courtship to Lady Mary. He’s controlling, adapts the aristocracy life well, and all the while, leaves no room for hesitation to wield his power to reject any honorable principles the Crawley family may hold.

We can’t disregard Sir Richard, however; because his character is loosely based on the real life newspaper and tabloid press tycoons, Lord Beaverbrook (left) and Lord Northcliffe (right).



Carlisle’s depiction of Lord Beaverbrook comes from the newspaper magnate’s friendship with many prominent political figures, all of which assisted the inception of his first paper, Daily Express.

Sir Richard’s other tabloid half, Lord Northcliffe, founded The Daily Mail in 1896, which earned him his first million, and was a cheap daily morning paper. Lord Northcliffe was a profit-first man.

Sir Richard Carlisle brings us, in the twenty-first century, a loose depiction of these two powerful, ruthless and rich prominent figures from the nineteenth century.


To get a better look at this time and the start of tabloids watch the documentary, A Tabloid is Born.

You can find the other three parts to this documentary here.


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One thought on “Character Bio: Sir Richard Carlisle

  1. February 9, 2013 at 1:49 pm Reply

    “Character Bio: Sir Richard Carlisle Natalie’s Diary” was a fantastic article, can not wait to browse a lot more of your blog posts. Time to spend a bit of time on the internet lolz. Thank you ,Suzette

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