The White Tower

Previous page: The Tower of London

The White Tower, ascribed to Gundulph, Bishop of Rochester, the chief feature of the building, best seen from the river or from Tower Hill, consists of three stories, all of considerable height, several vast vaults on the ground floor, and numerous watch towers and turrets on the battlements. In this tower the Court of the Plantagenets was held, and its gloomy apartments are associated with some of the most stirring events of English history.

The most remarkable rooms of the Keep are Queen Elizabeth's Armoury, with a vaulted Norman ceiling and walls of extraordinary thickness, from which opens the low, narrow, unventilated cell where Sir Walter Raleigh was imprisoned, and is said to have written his "History of the World".

The chapel of St. John, one of the best preserved and most interesting specimens of Norman architecture in England, with the semicircular eastern apse, the massive pillars, and round arches characteristic of the period of its erection; the Council Room, said to have been the scene of the arrest of Hastings; and the old Banqueting Hall of the Palace, both now used as storehouses for small arms.

Next page: The Outer Ward