A scene played out between Maggie Smith and Penelope Wilton on Downton Abbey last night, and the subject, parenting . For those of you entirely out of the know, Smith (right) plays the Dowager Countess, a woman who doesn't mince words and sounds and acts as if she just walked off the stage of an Oscar Wilde play. Wilton's Cousin Isobel is less well-to-do, but equally steadfast in her beliefs. These two hens cluck and spar with each other every chance they get. DOWAGER COUNTESS: One forgets about parenthood. The on-and-on-ness of it. COUSIN ISOBEL: Were you a very involved mother with Robert and Rosamund? DOWAGER COUNTESS: Does it surprise you? COUSIN ISOBEL: A bit. I'd imagined them surrounded by nannies and governesses being starched and ironed to spend an hour with you after tea. DOWAGER COUNTESS: Yes, but it was an hour every day. COUSIN ISOBEL: I see, yes. How tiring.