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The Unveiled Secrets Of The Tower Of London

Travelers Today       By    Joana Dyan Ordonez

Updated: Oct 13, 2016 06:05 PM EDT

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Tower of London, uk, london, White Tower
Inside The City Of London's New Landmark Skyscraper
LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 9: The Tower of London, surrounded by an installation entitled 'Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red' by artist Paul Cummins of 888,246 ceramic poppies, is visible from an upper floor of the newly constructed skyscraper, The Leadenhall Building, on September 9, 2014 in London, England. The skyscraper, located in the City of London, has been dubbed the 'Cheesegrater' for its distinctive shape. The building stands at 224 meters high and was designed by 'Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners'. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)
(Photo: Oli Scarff / Staff)

The Tower of London is a magnificent fortress with many stratum of history.  This has become one of the symbols of royalty. It was built around the White Tower.

It was build on the Thames by William the Conqueror to protect London and assert his power.

According to the History, The Tower of London is one of the capital's most iconic buildings, attracting more than two million visitors a year.

However, it began as a tourist attraction only from the Victorian era. Prior to that, the Tower of London is just about everything else.

It served as a fortress, a Royal residence, a home for the Royal Mint and the Crown Jewels, a storehouse for military weapons and a infamous prison.

As compiled by Travel and Leisure, the Tower of London is not just about the purported Royal treasures hidden inside.

The following are the more astonishing facts and well-kept secrets unveiled:

The Tower of London doubled as the Mint

For 500 years, beginning in 1279, the Tower of London guarded the country's Mint. Until 1663, coins were hammered by hand. It protects $32 billion worth of treasure

Animals once called the Tower home

The tower was a zoo for exotic animals long before it became a prison. Founded by King John as a royal menagerie in 1210, the gallery's various residents included lions, ostrich, elephants, and even a polar bear.

A sorcerer was imprisoned in the 1500's

Accordingly, an innkeeper from Bristol named Hew Draper has been one of the tower's inmates.

Based on reports by the Guardian, Hew Draper was a 16th-century Bristol innkeeper who got sent to the Tower for attempted sorcery.

He claimed that although he had been interested in magic, he had burnt all his magical books. However, his engravings, cut into the very stone of the Salt Tower, reveal he knew plenty about the occult.

It wasn't as deadly as it sounds

Notwithstanding all the legendary tales of torment, only 22 people were actually executed inside the Tower's walls.

The last person killed on the tower is a German spy named Josef Jakobs.  He was shot by a firing squad on August 15, 1941.

The ravens are the Tower's guardians

Charles II persisted that the resident ravens should be protected. He foresaw that if the ravens departed, the kingdom and the Tower would fall.

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