Downton Abbey: A lonely countess and her illicit love affair with Egyptian prince


Downton”s greatest secret: A lonely countess, an illicit love affair with an Egyptian prince… and an Earl who has no right to his title. The extraordinary claims about real life Lord

1:54 PM on 21st October 2011

Prince Victor Duleep Singh, Prince of India at a fancy dress ball at Devonshire House as the Emperor Akbar, the Mogul emperor Almina the 5th Countess of Carnarvon

High society friends: Prince Victor Duleep Singh, left, and Almina, 5th Countess of Carnarvon, right. Evidence unearthed by a historian suggests their friendship may not have been platonic

Legitimate heir Lord Carnarvon pictured at his home Highclere Castle, Hampshire, great-grandson of British Egyptology patron George Herbert, Fifth Earl of Carnarvon

Legitimate heir Lord Carnarvon, pictured at his Hampshire home of Highclere Castle, is the great-grandson of British Egyptology patron George Herbert, Fifth Earl of Carnarvon

Skeletons: Lord Carnarvon poses at his home Highclere Castle, Hampshire, beside a portrait of his great grandfather, British Egyptologist George Herbert, Fifth Earl of Carnarvon

Skeletons: Lord Carnarvon poses at his home Highclere Castle, Hampshire, beside a portrait of his great grandfather, British Egyptologist George Herbert, Fifth Earl of Carnarvon

A portrait of the supposedly under-sexed 5th Earl of Carnarvon A pre-wedding portrait of Lady Almina before she married the 5th Earl of Carnarvon

History uncovered: A portrait of the supposedly under-sexed 5th Earl of Carnarvon, and right, a portrait of Lady Almina, taken ahead of her marriage to the Earl

Almina stands at the crib of her son, Henry George, who would go on to become the 6th Earl of Carnarvon

Birthright riddle: Almina stands at the crib of her son, Henry George, who would go on to become the 6th Earl of Carnarvon. But was the baby the son of an Indian prince, or her husband, the 5th Earl of Carnarvon

The 1922 wedding photo of the 6th Earl of Carnarvon, the son of Almina and the 5th Earl of Carnarvon. He married Anne Catherine Tredick Wendell

Wedding Day: The 1922 wedding photo of the 6th Earl of Carnarvon, the son of the 5th Earl of Carnarvon and Almina. He married Anne Catherine Tredick Wendell,daughter of Jacob Wendell. They divorced in 1936.