The Garden Guide

Book: London and Its Environs, 1927
Chapter: 33 The Tower and Tower Hill

Tower of London 4

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The escorted parties to other parts of the Tower, after visiting several of the rooms and inspecting the interesting mechanism of the portcullis in the Byward Tower, follow the Outer Ward to the north, passing the outer wall of the Yeoman Gaoler's House and the Beauchamp Tower. Farther on they pass, without entering, the Devereux, Flint, Bowyer, and Brick Towers, and reach the north-east part of the ward, where several German spies were shot during the Great War. In the Bowyer Tower (modernized) the Duke of Clarence, son of Richard, Duke of York, is said to have been drowned in a butt of Malmsey (1478). The Martin Tower (13th century), where visitors are shown some well-preserved inscriptions by prisoners, was formerly the Jewel House, and here in 1671 Colonel Blood made his bold and nearly successful attempt to carry off the crown. It was in this tower that the Seven Bishops were confined under James II. (1688). We now traverse the top of the ballium wall, passing through the Constable Tower (once the Governor's residence) and the Broad Arrow Tower (name of uncertain origin), in which are numerous inscriptions. The Salt Tower, at the south-east angle of the wall, dates from the reign of William Rufus and was perhaps used as a store for salt or, more probably, saltpetre. Among the inscriptions here is a figure for casting horoscopes, carved by Hew Draper, imprisoned in 1561 for sorcery. Thence passing the Lanthorn Tower we regain the 'open' parts of the precincts. The Tower Wharf, between the Tower and the river, with more old cannon, affords a good view of the river and its shipping. Beyond the Traitors' Gate is the Cradle Tower (rebuilt), which derived its name from a hoist by which boats were raised to the level of the gateway; this was the water-gate used by the royal family. A walk through the public Tower Gardens on the north and west sides of the Tower, outside the moat, is interesting also.