The Tower of London is a historic castle on the north bank of the River
Thames in central London, England. It lies within the London Borough of
Tower Hamlets, separated from the eastern edge of the City of London by
the open space known as Tower Hill. It was founded in 1066 as part of
the Norman Conquest of England. The White Tower, which gives the entire
castle its name, was built by William the Conqueror in 1078, and was a
resented symbol of oppression, inflicted upon London by the new ruling
elite. Since at least 1100, the castle has been used as a prison,
although that was not its primary purpose. The Tower of London has
played a prominent role in England's history. It was besieged several
times and controlling it has been important to controlling the country.
The Tower has served variously as an armoury, a treasury, a menagerie,
the home of the Royal Mint, a public records office, and the home of
the Crown Jewels of the United Kingdom. The zenith of the castle's use
as a prison came in the 16th and 17th centuries, when many figures
fallen into disgrace, such as Elizabeth I before she became queen, were
held within its walls. Today the Tower of London is a popular tourist
attraction. It is cared for by the charity Historic Royal Palaces and
is protected as a World Heritage Site.
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Today's selected anniversaries:
The Metropolitan Police of Greater London, originally headquartered in
Great Scotland Yard, Westminster, was founded.
The Blackpool tramway, one of the first practical electric tramways in
the world, opened in Blackpool, Lancashire, England.
At a conference in Munich, Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, British
Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, and French Prime Minister Édouard
Daladier reached a settlement, signing it at about 1:30 am the next
day, stipulating that Czechoslovakia must cede the Sudetenland to
The Holocaust: German Nazis aided by their collaborators began the Babi
Yar massacre in Kiev, Ukraine, killing over 30,000 Jewish civilians in
two days and thousands more in the months that followed.
Twelve countries signed a convention establishing the European
Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), currently the world's largest
particle physics laboratory.
Wiktionary's word of the day:
An aircraft that generates lift through the flapping of its wings
Wikiquote quote of the day:
I must speak the truth, and nothing but the truth.
--Miguel de Cervantes
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