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Charles Ryder, a lonely student at Oxford, is captivated by the outrageous and decadent Sebastian Flyte. Invited to Brideshead, Sebastian’s magnificent family home, Charles welcomes the attentions of its eccentric, artistic inhabitants the Marchmains, becoming infatuated with them and the life of privilege they inhabit – in particular, with Sebastian’s remote sister, Julia. But, as duty and desire, faith and happiness come into conflict, and the Marchmains struggle to find their place in a changing world, Charles eventually comes to recognize his spiritual and social distance from them.