Rose Leslie (born 9 February 1987), better known as Rose Leslie, is a Scottish actress. She is best known for portraying Ygritte in the HBO fantasy series Game of Thrones and Gwen Dawson in the ITV television drama Downton Abbey.
Leslie was born in Aberdeen, and grew up in Lickleyhead Castle, her family’s 15th century ancestral seat, before moving to England for school. Her father is Sebastian Arbuthnot-Leslie, the Aberdeenshire Chieftain of Clan Leslie, and her mother is Candida Mary Sibyl “Candy” Leslie (née Weld), great-granddaughter of Simon Fraser, 13th Lord Lovat (a descendant of Charles II). Leslie is the third of five children. Her parents own the 12th century Warthill Castle in Aberdeenshire.
Leslie’s great-great grandfather was Guillermo de Landa y Escandón, who served as Mayor of Mexico City. She was educated at Rayne North primary school in Aberdeenshire, and then the private Millfield School in England, before spending three years at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, graduating with a BA in 2008.