Tower of London, London


The Tower of London
1900s
Publisher: H. Vertigen & Co (1906-9)


I’ve marked the locations of the cards below on this map. (Click for larger version.) The base map comes from Hipkiss’s Scanned Old Maps

Postcards of Tower and river

Historic Royal Places: Tower of London (aimed at visitors)

UNESCO World Heritage Listing

Authorised Guide to the Tower of London, 1904 (on Project Gutenberg)

The Tower of London, officially Her Majesty’s Royal Palace and Fortress of the Tower of London, is a historic castle located on the north bank of the River Thames in central London. It lies within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, which is separated from the eastern edge of the square mile of the City of London by the open space known as Tower Hill. It was founded towards the end of 1066 as part of the Norman Conquest of England. The White Tower, which gives the entire castle its name, was built by William the Conqueror in 1078 and was a resented symbol of oppression, inflicted upon London by the new ruling elite. The castle was used as a prison from 1100 (Ranulf Flambard) until 1952 (Kray twins), although that was not its primary purpose. A grand palace early in its history, it served as a royal residence. As a whole, the Tower is a complex of several buildings set within two concentric rings of defensive walls and a moat. There were several phases of expansion, mainly under kings Richard I, Henry III, and Edward I in the 12th and 13th centuries. The general layout established by the late 13th century remains despite later activity on the site.
Wikipedia

The Tower of London was founded by King William the Conqueror. After his coronation on Christmas Day, 1066, William hastily ordered the erection of a wooden fortress between the Thames and the ancient Roman wall which then surrounded London. William began the building of what is now termed as the White Tower ten years later. A rectangular stone keep of Caen stone, designed as an impregnable fortress and as an impressive and awesome demonstration of his power to the Londoners. With ramparts which were fifteen feet thick at the base and walls soaring ninety feet high, the dominating shadow of the Tower loomed forebodingly over the huddled wooden buildings of medieval London, a visible expression of Norman power.
English Monarchs: The Tower of London in the Middle Ages


On the back:
TOWER OF LONDON
The Middle tower
The Middle Tower forms the principal entrance to the Tower of London, and protects the bridge across the most. It is the only Tower outside the moat.</em?

MT on map
Google Street View.


The Tower of London, on the Terrace
1930s
Publisher: Photochrom

Area between Middle Tower and Byward Tower. Marked T on map
Google Street View.


Tower of London — Byward Tower — From the West
Publisher: Ministry of Works

Marked BT1 on map


The Tower of London. The Byward Tower.
1930s
Publisher: Photochrom

Marked BT2 on map


On back:
Tower of London
View along the Outer Ward looking towards the Byward Tower
On the right is the Bell Tower, in which were confined Queen Anne Boleyn, Queen Katharine Howard, Sir Thomas Moore, and other famous prisoners.

Publisher: Gale & Polden Ltd

Google Street View

Not marked on map, but between BT2 & TG.


Changing Guard, Tower of London
Publisher: Valentine Company

CG on map (approximately)


On back:
In the Beauchamp Tower.
Many of the stones bear inscriptions engraved by prisoners in former ages.
Publisher: Gale & Polden Ltd

Not marked in red on map but to the left of CG

Google Street View.

The main entrance to the inner ward would have been through a gatehouse, most likely in the west wall on the site of what is now Beauchamp Tower. The inner ward’s western curtain wall was rebuilt by Edward I. The 13th-century Beauchamp Tower marks the first large-scale use of brick as a building material in Britain, since the 5th-century departure of the Romans. The Beauchamp Tower is one of 13 towers that stud the curtain wall. Clockwise from the south-west corner they are: Bell, Beauchamp, Devereux, Flint, Bowyer, Brick, Martin, Constable, Broad Arrow, Salt, Lanthorn, Wakefield, and the Bloody Tower. While these towers provided positions from which flanking fire could be deployed against a potential enemy, they also contained accommodation.
Wikipedia.

The Beauchamp Tower is on the west side of Tower Green, facing the White Tower, and is on the inner wall between the Bell Tower on the south and the Devereux Tower on the north, being connected with both by a walk along the parapet. Its present name probably refers to the residence in it as a prisoner of Thomas, third Earl of Warwick, of the Beauchamp family, who was attainted under Richard II in 1397, but restored to his honours and liberty two years later under Henry IV. It is curious that the most interesting associations of the place should be connected with his successors in the earldom. Although built entirely for defensive purposes, we find it thus early used as a prison, and during the two following centuries it seems to have been regarded as one of the most convenient places in which to lodge prisoners of rank, and in consequence many of the most interesting mural inscriptions are to be found in its chambers.

In plan the Beauchamp Tower is semicircular, and it projects eighteen feet beyond the face of the wall. It consists of three storeys, of which the middle one is on a level with the rampart, on which it formerly opened. The whole building dates from the reign of Edward III. We enter at the south-east corner and ascend by a circular staircase to the middle chamber, which is spacious and has a large window, with a fire-place. Here are to be found most of the inscriptions, some having been brought from other chambers.
[Continues with some of the inscriptions]
Authorised Guide to the Tower of London, 1904 (on Project Gutenberg)


The Place of Execution, Tower of London

PE on map
Google Street View. (If you turn around the Chapel Royal of St Peter ad Vincula (below) can be seen.)


On the back:
Chapel of St. Peter-ad-Vincula
Beneath the altar lie the remains of Anne Boleyn, Katharine Howard, Lady Jane Grey, the Duke of Monmouth, and many others beheaded in the Tower.

Publisher: Gale & Polden Ltd

Google Street View.

The Chapel Royal of St Peter ad Vincula (“St Peter in chains”) is the parish church of the Tower of London. It is situated within the Tower’s Inner Ward, and the current building dates from 1520, although the church was established several centuries earlier. . . . At the west end is a short tower, surmounted by a lantern bell-cote, and inside the church is a nave and shorter north aisle, lit by windows with cusped lights but no tracery, a typical Tudor design. The church is a Chapel Royal, and the priest responsible for it is the chaplain of the Tower, a canon and member of the Ecclesiastical Household.
Wikipedia

Observe, on the right, almost adjoining the Barrack, the Chapel of St. Peter “ad Vincula,” so called from having been consecrated on that well-known festival of the Latin Church, the 1st of August, probably in the reign of Henry I (1100-1135). The old chapel was burnt in 1512, and the present building erected only in time to receive the bodies of the first victims of the tyranny of Henry VIII. It was considered a Royal Chapel before 1550; the interior is not shown to the public. Here it is, in the memorable words of Stow, writing in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, that there lie before the high altar, “two dukes between two queens, to wit, the Duke of Somerset and the Duke of Northumberland, between Queen Anne and Queen Katharine, all four beheaded.” Here also are buried Lady Jane (Grey) and Lord Guildford Dudley, the Duke of Monmouth, and the Scotch lords, Kilmarnock, Balmerino, and Lovat, beheaded for their share in the rebellion of 1745. The last burial in the chapel was that of Sir John Fox Burgoyne, Constable of the Tower, in 1871.
Authorised Guide to the Tower of London, 1904 (on Project Gutenberg)


The Armoury, Tower of London
c.1910
Caption on back:
The Armoury, Tower of London
Is in the two upper floor of the White Tower. The rooms on the second floor contain Eastern Arms and armour, and more modern European arms. The main portion of the collection is in the Council Chamber, includes a series of equestrian figures in full equipment.

White Tower is marked as WT on map.


Tower of London
The Chapel of St John in the White Tower. The Ambulatory.
Publisher: Ministry of Works

White Tower is marked as WT on map.


On the back:
Gateway of Bloody Tower
Above the doorway of the Bloody Tower is seen the portcullis, which is still in working order. This tower fully deserves the name of “bloody” for it has been the scene of death in all its forms.
Publisher: Gale & Polden Ltd

P on map.


Portcullis in Bloody Tower
Tower of London
Publisher: Gale & Polden Ltd

On the back:
Bloody Tower
Interior, showing the ancient portcullis and windlass for raising and lowering

P on map (approximately, it’s above the entrance to the tower)


Tower of London
The Bloody Tower
Interior

Publisher: Minstry of Works


Tower of London. Traitor’s Gate.
1930s
Publisher: Photochrom

TG on map
Google Street View.


The Tower of London. Entrance of Promenade.
1930s
Publisher: Photochrom

E on map
Google Street View.


Group of Yeoman Warders — Undress Uniform
Tower of London.

Publisher: Gale & Polden Ltd


The Tower of London, & Tower Bridge
Publisher: Photochrom
1930s

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