"If we ever forget that we're one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under." - Ronald Reagan

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

LONDON! Day 10: Tower of London Interior

Okay, sorry for the delay. And if you can't get enough Harry Potter funny stuff, you've got to go here.

Once inside the Tower of London, we went to a play, of sorts, that discussed the various forms of torture and who exactly was tortured. The guy in green is the gaoler (jailer). And the guy wearing the yellow sash was a famous prisoner, a wealthy Catholic who, during the course of the performance, escaped. The guy in black with the funny hat is a famous Lieutenant. It was really interesting, hearing the prisoners' different reasons - all perfectly practical - for asking for "contraband." Those items were then used as a means of secretive communication and even to escape.

After the presentation ended (and we were all released from prison), we went to see the Crown Jewels. Absolutely no cameras allowed. They were much more strict about this than at Westminster Abbey. So no pictures. but I will say that the vault was very impressive. And the jewels themselves looked so gaudy, it was hard to believe they were real. There was also a display of the royal serving ware. The punch bowl was about the size of a bathtub - all gold! And several salt servers. I guess the English really, really like their salt. Also got to see a mini changing of the guard when they relieved this guy up at the booth in front of the Jewel House.

This is a Yeoman Warder. There are the "tour guides" at the Tower of London. They are also the Queen's personal guards. To be a warder, you must have 22 years of exemplary service in one of the armed forces (excluding the navy - remind me and I'll tell you why). For every one job opening there are about 100 applicants. We jumped into this tour about 15 minutes into it (because it was the last one of the day). These guys have a real knack for this. Not only do they have endless amounts of facts and stories, but there are very interesting and entertaining to listen to.
Some Interior Shots:

There are 21 towers that make up the Tower of London. This one is called the Lanthorn Tower. It got it's name from the kind of lantern that was hung in the top area, as a sort of lighthouse and identifier to the boats on the river. Lanthorn Tower was built in 1220s but this is the restored version, as the original was badly damaged by fires.

And this was over by the bathrooms! A very cool view...but not such a great smell.

The famous Traitor's Gate. Prisoners who were brought to the Tower by boat came in through here. It's called the Traitor's Gate because this is where many tried to escape, like Anne Boleyn and Sir Thomas Moore.

Next time: The White Tower.


Kristie said...

I must say that I find everything so interesting. It is like I am right there with you!!! I love it!!!! There are so many things that I am learning from your posts. Now if only I could remember them past tomorrow......me and my faulty brain!!!

Kristie said...

Oh and I meant to say that I missed your FHE post this week!!!

Jessica G. said...

Kristie - pregnancy has been known to cause faulty brains. :) And there was no FHE post because we didn't have FHE. We went to see Harry Potter instead! *GASP!* I can hear our temple recommends withering away!

Kristie said...

You are too funny!! I think that ALL of my kids have drained my brain!!! By the time I am done having kids, there will be no brains left in my head. Just a bunch of marbles rolling around and making noise!!!!

Amanda said...

Those pictures almost look fake....like you got them off the internet:) But I know you were really there....I believe ya!

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