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The Tower of London

The Tower of London

The Tower of London

The Tower of London, officially the Royal Palace of Har Majesty and the Tower of London, is a historic castle on the north bank of the River Thames in central London. It is located in the London Borough of Tower Hamlet, separated by an open space known as Tower Hill from the east end of the city square mile. It was founded in late 1066 as part of the Norman conquest. The White Tower, which gives the entire castle its name, was built by William the Conqueror in 1078 and was an outrageous symbol of the oppression that was imposed on London by the new ruling elite. The castle was also used as a prison from 1100 (Ranulf Flambard) to 1952 (Cray twins), although this was not its original purpose. A huge palace in early history, it served as a royal residence. Overall, the tower is a complex of several buildings housed between two concentric rings of protective walls and a moat. There were several stages of expansion, mainly under King Richard I, and Henry III, and under Edward I in the 12th and 13th centuries. The general layout site, established in the late 13th century, remains the site despite the subsequent activity.

"The Tower of London"

The Tower of London has played a significant role in English history. It was besieged several times, and it became important to control the country it controlled. The Tower has served in various ways as an arsenal, a treasury, a dormitory, the home of the Royal Mint, a public records office and the home of the Crown Jewels in England. From the beginning of the 14th century until the reign of Charles II in the 17th century, a procession will be conducted from the Tower to Westminster Abbey for the coronation of a king. In the king's absence, the constable of the tower is in charge of the fort. In the Middle Ages, it was a strong and faithful position. Towards the end of the 15th century, the princes of the Tower were kept in the castle when they mysteriously disappeared, presumed to have been killed. Under the Tudors, the tower was used less as a royal residence, and despite efforts to restore and repair the fort, its defenses lagged behind in development to deal with artillery.

"The Tower of London"

In World Wars I and II, the tower was again used as a prison and witnessed the execution of 12 people for espionage. After World War II, the damage caused during the Blitz was repaired and the castle was reopened to the public. Currently, the Tower of London is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the country. Under the formal responsibility of the constable of the Tower, and managed by the Resident Governor of the Tower of London and the keeper of the Jewel House, the property is guarded by the charitable Historic Royal Palaces and is protected as a World Heritage Site.

The Tower of London

The architecture of the Tower of London

The tower was based on its strongest and most impressive defense, ignoring Saxon London, which archaeologist Alan Vince suggested was intentional. It apparently dominated the surrounding area and stood for traffic on the River Thames. The fort consists of three "wards". The innermost ward has the White Tower and this is the first step of the fort. Surrounding it on the north, east and west are the inner wards, built during the reign of Richard I (1189-1199). Finally, there is the outer ward that surrounds the fort and it was built under Edward I. Although there were several phases of expansion after the founding of William the Conqueror Tower of London, the general layout has remained the same since Edward I first completed its reconstruction in 1285.

The castle encloses an area of ​​about 12 acres (4.9 hectares) around the Tower of London, with another 6 acres (2.4 hectares) forming the Tower Liberties - under the direct influence of the castle and evacuated for military reasons. The antecedents of independence were established in the 13th century when Henry III ordered that a strip of land adjacent to the fort be kept clean. Despite popular fiction, the Tower of London never had a permanent torture chamber, although later there was a shelf in the basement of the White Tower. Tower Wharf was built on the banks of the Thames under Edward I and expanded to its present form during the reign of Richard II (1377-1399).

Outer Ward

A third ward was created during the expansion of the Edward I tower, as the narrow enclosure completely surrounded the fort. At the same time, a tower known as Legge's Mount was erected in the northwest corner of the fort. Brass mount, tower in the northeast corner, next addition. Three rectangular towers 15 meters (49 feet) from the east wall were demolished in 1843. Although towers have often been associated with the Tudor era, there is no evidence to support this; Archaeological excavations have revealed that Mount Edward of Tail was of the first reign. The only surviving medieval battlefield in the Tower of London (the rest is a Victorian replacement) is the blocked battle on the south side of Leg's Mount. A new 50-meter (160-foot) trench was dug outside the fort's new boundary; it was originally 4.5 meters (15 feet) deeper than it is today. With the addition of a new curtain wall, the old main entrance to the Tower of London was obscured and redundant; A new entrance was made to the southwest corner of the outer wall circuit. The complex had an indoor and outdoor gatehouse and a barbecue, known as the Lion Tower because it has been associated with animals since at least 1330 as part of the Royal Menagerie. The Lion Tower itself is no longer alive.

"The Tower of London"

Edward extended the south side of the Tower of London into the land that had previously been submerged by the River Thames. On this wall, he built the St. Thomas Tower between 1275 and 1279; Later known as the Traitor Gate, it replaces the bloody tower as the water gate of the fort. The building is unique in England, and the nearest parallel is the now-broken water-gate at the Louvre in Paris. The dock was covered with arrows in case of an attack on the fort from the river; There was also a portcullis at the entrance to control who entered. The first floor had luxurious accommodation. Edward removed the Royal Mint to the tower; Its exact location is unknown at first, although it was probably in the outer ward or Lion Tower. By 1560, the mint was located in a building on the outer ward near the Salt Tower. Between 1348 and 1355, a second water-gate, called the Cradle Tower, was added to St. Thomas's Tower for the King's personal use.

"The Tower of London"

History of the Tower of London:

The castle, later to be known as the Tower of London, was built on the southeast corner of the Roman city walls, using them as a predefined defense, with the Thames providing additional protection from the south.

Most of the early Norman castles were made of wood, but a few were renovated or replaced with stone, including the Tower of London, in the late 11th century.

The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle records that in 1097 King William II ordered the construction of a wall around the Tower of London; It was probably built of stone and probably replaced the wooden palisade between the Roman wall (east) and the Thames (south), to the north and west of the castle.

Henry I's death in 1135 leaves England with a controversial legacy; Although the king agreed to take an oath of allegiance to his most powerful baron, Empress Matilda, only a few days after Henry's death, Stephen of the Bliss came from France to claim the throne. The importance of the city and its towers is indicated by the speed at which he defended London.

The Tower of London

Expansion of the Tower of London:

The fort, founded in 1100, probably retained its form until the reign of Richard I (1189-1199). The castle was expanded under King Richard's Lord Chancellor William Longchamp and he was in charge of England during the Crusades. Pipe Rolls spent a record £ 2,881 1s 10d on the Tower of London between 3 December 1189 and 11 November 1190, from Richard's estimated £ 7,000 costs to build the castle in England. According to Howden's contemporary chronological Roger, Longchamp dug a trench around the castle and tried unsuccessfully to fill it from the Thames.

In the 13th century, King Henry III (1216-1272) and Edward I (1272-1307) expanded the fort, originally building it as it is today. Henry was disconnected from his barons, and the lack of mutual understanding caused unrest and resentment towards his rule. As a result, he was keen to ensure the Tower of London was a strong fortress; At the same time, Henry was an estate and wanted to make the castle a comfortable place to live. The Tower of London cost about 10,000 from 1216 to 1227; During this time, only Windsor Castle's work costs more (15,000). Most of the work was focused on the palace building in the inner ward. The tradition of whitewashing the White Tower (from which it derives its name) began in 1240.

Henry III often sat on the court in the Tower of London and convened parliament there on at least two occasions (1236 and 1261) when he realized that the barons were becoming dangerously erratic. In 1258, disgruntled barons led by Simon de Montfort forced the king to agree to reforms, including holding regular parliaments. The Tower of London was among the conditions to leave. Henry III resented losing power and asked the pope for permission to break his oath. In support of the mercenaries, Henry placed himself in the tower in 1261. While negotiations with the barons continued, the king confined himself to the fort, although no army advanced to capture it. The king again agreed to a truce on the condition of handing over control of the tower. Henry achieved a significant victory in the Battle of Evesham in 1265, allowing him to regain control of the country and the Tower of London.

"The Tower of London"

Although he rarely lived in London, Edward undertook a costly renovation of the First Tower, costing 21 21,000 between 1275 and 1285, more than double the cost of the castle during the entire reign of Henry III. Edward, I was a seasoned castle builder and used the experience of siege warfare during the Crusades to innovate fortifications. His program of building castles in Wales marked the beginning of the widespread use of arrowheads on castle walls throughout Europe, drawing on earlier influences. In the Tower of London, Edward filled in the trenches dug by Henry III and built a new curtain wall along its line, creating a new enclosure. A new trench was made in front of the new curtain wall. The western part of the curtain wall of Henry III was rebuilt, replacing the Beauchamp Tower with the old gatehouse of the castle. A new entrance with extensive defenses, including two gatehouses and a barbecue, was built. In an effort to make the castle self-sufficient, Edward I also added two watermills. In 1278, six hundred Jews were imprisoned in the Tower of London on charges of money laundering. The persecution of the Jewish population of the country under Edward began in 1276 and ended in 1290 when he issued a deportation order for the Jews. In 1279, the country's numerous mints were consolidated under a single system that resulted in the centralization of the mint within the Tower of London, while mints outside of London were reduced, with only a few local and episcopal mints operating.

During the reign of Edward II (1307-1327) the Tower of London had relatively little activity. However, it was during this period that the Privy Wardrobe was established. In 1321, Margaret de Claire, Barnes Badlesmeyer became the first woman to be captured in the Tower of London after she refused Queen Isabella to enter Leeds Castle and ordered her archers to shoot at Isabella, killing six royal escorts. During this time, the Tower of London held many great prisoners of war. Edward II let the Tower of London fall into disrepair, and the castle was an uncomfortable place during the reign of Edward III. During the peasant revolt of 1381, the Tower of London was besieged by the king. In the 15th century, there was little construction work on the Tower of London, yet the castle was still important as a place of refuge. When supporters of Richard II attempted a coup, Henry IV found security in the Tower of London. The incident is one of the most infamous incidents involving the Tower of London. Richard, the uncle of Edward V, was proclaimed Lord Protector by the Duke of Gloucester when the prince was too young to rule. Traditional accounts hold that 12-year-old Edward was confined to the Tower of London with his younger brother Richard.

The Tower of London


The Tower of London has been established as one of the most popular tourist attractions in the country. It has been a tourist attraction since at least the Elizabethan era when it was one of the most visited places in London by foreign visitors.

In 1855, the War Office took over the responsibility of making and storing weapons from the Ordnance Office, which gradually moved out of the fort. At the same time, there was a greater interest in the history of the Tower of London.

In The Tower of London: A Historical Romance, he created a vivid picture of underground torture chambers and devices for extracting confessions that stuck in the public imagination.

Although only one bomb fell on the Tower of London in World War I (it landed innocently in the trenches), World War II left a larger mark. On 23 September 1940, during the Blitz, high-explosive bombs damaged the castle, destroyed several buildings, and the White Tower was briefly lost. After the war, the damage was repaired and the Tower of London was reopened to the public.

Since 1990, the Tower of London has been run by an independent charity, the historic Royal Palace, which receives no funding from the government or the Crown. In 1988, the Tower of London was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List of World Heritage Sites, in recognition of its global importance and to help preserve and protect the site.

Crown Jewels: The tradition of keeping Crown Jewels in the Tower of London probably dates back to the reign of Henry III (1216-1272). The Jewel House was specially designed to house royalty, including jewelry, plates and symbols of royalty such as crowns, scepters and swords. When money needs to be raised, wealth can be bound by the emperor.

Royal Menagerie: There is evidence that King John (1166-1216) began keeping wild animals in the first tower. The record of 1210-1212 shows the payment of lion keepers.

In folklore: The Tower of London has been presented in popular culture in many ways. As a result of the writers of the 16th and 19th centuries, the tower gained a reputation as a place of dreadful castle, torture and execution.

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"The Tower of London"

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"The Tower of London"

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"The Tower of London"


Tower of London, London, EC3N 4AB

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