The medieval Tower of London is a monument to centuries of British history, yet a vile and sinister spirit dwells within its imposing walls. Explore the eerie legends surrounding this renowned stronghold, from the fabled Anne Boleyn ghost to the terrifying tales of the Princes in the Tower. The Tower is one of the most haunted locations in England.
The Tower's Haunted History
William the Conqueror constructed the Tower of London in 1078. It is a complex of many structures enclosed by two rings of walls that are there to deter attackers. In the 12th and 13th centuries, kings built several extensions. The Tower of London has had a tremendous impact on England's history. It has served as the nation's treasury, public records office, armory, home to the Royal Mint, and guardian of the crown jewels. Even though the Tower has undergone several alterations and extensions, the fundamental design of the structure has remained the same.
The nation's history will be lacking if the Tower of London is not acknowledged. The Tower has experienced several sieges. Kings and conquerors felt that to rule the nation. The Tower needed to be taken. A jail was housed in the castle in the fifteenth century. However, the 16th and 17th centuries saw the castle's highest use as a jail. Elizabeth I was one of the several notable people imprisoned in the Tower. The phrase "sent to the Tower" became well-known due to its employment as a prison for prisoners.
Although the Tower has been the subject of much discussion and is often believed to be a place of torture and execution, the actual number of executions there—seven—is very modest compared to other locations. On the castle grounds, the renowned Tower Hill was frequently used for executions. Tower Hill has seen 112 executions for 400 years. John Taylor and Anthony Salvin renovated the castle to what they thought was its medieval aspect. The majority of the abandoned post-medieval buildings were removed. The castle served as a jail again during the two World Wars, where 12 individuals were killed for espionage. During the Second World War's Blitz, the castle suffered catastrophic damage. However, it was fixed and made accessible to the public. The castle is now maintained and preserved as a World Heritage Site by the organization Historic Royal Palace.
Notable Spirits Haunting the Tower's Halls
One of the earliest spirits spotted in the Tower is Thomas A. Becket. Thomas appeared frustrated when the Inner Curtain Wall was still being built and smashed the wall with his cross. One of the castle's most well-known ghosts is Arbella Stuart. She was initially thought of as Queen Elizabeth I's heir. Her spirit allegedly resides at The Queen's House on Tower Green. The ghost of none other than Queen Anne Boleyn is the most persistent one of all in the Tower of London. She was King Henry VIII's wife. On May 19, 1536, she was captured, carried to Tower Green, and executed there.
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