Historical Towers of London

West End Waterloo Barracks. This 1845 construction within the Tower houses the Crown Jewels permanently in a vault. It is possible to see in the upper room of the Ground Floor the Great Sword of State which was made in 1845 and has been used since 1678 at every Opening of Parliament. In addition, it contains the Orders of Knighthood insignia and the robes of monarchs, worn in coronations from 1821. See Crown Jewel Tour to get more info.

Crown Jewels found in this vault are only a few decades old. This is because, during the Commonwealth era, monarchy’s ancient symbols were discarded. St Edward’s Crown weighed 5 lbs and was made out of gold in 1661 for Charles’ coronation. It’s still worn at coronation events, replacing the Imperial State Crown created for Queen Victoria in1838 with its over 3000 gems. Imperial Indian Crown contains over 1,000 Diamonds George V wore this crown at the Delhi Durbar in 1911. His queen wore a diamond crown in 1911 when she became crowned. It includes swords as well, orbs bracelets, scepters maces and anointing teaspoons.

What would an elephant wear to war? You can find the answer only at the New Armories of Tower of London. Clive of India won the Battle of Plassey and brought home a suit of Elephant’s Armor. There is a large collection of weapons, firearms and armour from the eighteenth to nineteenth century. Also included are armors originating from Royal Collections.

New Armories affixed to wall between Broad Arrow Tower Salt Tower. This is all work of the 13th century. Salt Tower has a lot to offer those who have been long dead, and whose poor carvings are still visible. One can’t help but feel sorry for the poor prisoners. Some believe that the saltpeter, gunpowder or both were once kept here.

North of the Armories there is the Regimental Museum of the Royal Fusiliers. It was established in the Tower of London 1685, and merged with the other Regiments in 1968. This Fusilier guarded the Gate when a password or by-word was an essential prerequisite for entry. Byword (or Byword Tower) is visited by thousands of tourists every day.

Traitors’ Gate in medieval times was used by those who were conspiring to undermine the throne, as well as anyone who challenged their power, into the Tower for imprisonment. The barge would have been towed in via the Thames, under the arch measuring 60 feet. When the towers were being built, around 1242, for Henry III and Edward I, they both had the Bloody Tower in front of them. Thomas Cranmer the Archbishop of Canterbury burned at the stake in 1556. Here, Sir Walter Raleigh wrote the unfinished History of the World (1614) and the infamous Jeffreys who, on April 18, 1689, passed away in delirium.