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Tower of London

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The history...

The Tower of London, a historic castle on the north bank of the River Thames, has a rich history that spans nearly a thousand years. Its origins date back to 1066 when William the Conqueror began its construction as a demonstration of Norman power following his victory at the Battle of Hastings.

The White Tower, the central keep and the oldest part of the complex, was completed around 1078. It was designed to serve as both a fortress and a royal palace. Over the centuries, successive monarchs expanded the Tower, adding walls, towers, and other buildings, transforming it into a sprawling complex.

Throughout its history, the Tower of London has served various roles. It has been a royal residence, a treasury, an armory, and even a zoo. However, it is perhaps most infamous as a prison. Many notable figures were imprisoned within its walls, including Anne Boleyn, Sir Thomas More, and Lady Jane Grey. The Tower's reputation as a place of imprisonment and execution has left an indelible mark on its history.

The Tower also played a significant role in the protection of the Crown Jewels. Since the 14th century, the Crown Jewels have been housed at the Tower, and they continue to be one of its most popular attractions today. These regalia symbolize the enduring monarchy of Britain and are used in various state ceremonies.

In addition to its grim history, the Tower has had moments of grandeur. It hosted the Royal Menagerie, a collection of exotic animals given as gifts to the monarchy, which eventually moved to form the basis of the London Zoo.

Today, the Tower of London is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the United Kingdom's most visited tourist attractions.

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London, journey on...

Founded by Romans, the city is one of the most powerful and important cities in the world.