Travelling back in history: The Tower of London

The Tower of London was by far the most historic site I’ve visited in my seven-day Eurotrip. Of course,the entirety of the city itself is historic in a sense, but none other landmark was more frozen in time than the Tower itself. Centuries have passed since Thomas More, Anne Boleyn and Lady Jane Grey were imprisoned and executed in the Green Room, but I could still sense the dusty spookiness of medieval prison still breathing in every corner.

For hundreds of years, the Tower has served the monarch as the royal palace, prison and fortress. The multiplicity of its historic functions and the vastness of its bounds make it distinguished from other landmarks of London.

To the eyes of a foreigner, the Tower was a place of cruelty and bloodiness rather than that of glory and triumph. There are many signs of deaths, torture and imprisonment that were only understood and justified in that particular time in the past. Some of the exhibitions were seriously disturbing because I couldn’t help identifying myself to the ones who perished there against their will. At the same time, I was also impressed by the amounts of efforts by the British people to keep their stories alive.

Entering the Tower. I was so overwhelmed by delight of coming to the place I’ve always dreamed of visiting, ever since being captivated by the story of Thomas More who perished here.

Note how the function of the “Traitor’s Gate” has been diluted over the centuries to become a photozone for tourists. It’s almost hard to imagine weeping prisoners crossing this gate and stepping onto the stone floor that would soon be spilled by his blood.

The luscious Wall Walk. It gave a odd feeling to stand between the medieval outlook on the Tower on one side and the modern streets on the other side.

The most disturbing, yet impressive exhibit I saw there. The Tower was used as a prison until the end of WWI, and this chair was where the last execution took place. Note the bullet hole that went through the German spy’s chest.


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Filed under General, Outdoors

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