Tower of London 3D

A 3D version of our history of the Tower of London timeline.

You can view our original 2d Tower of London timeline [here](;xNLx;;xNLx;The information for this timeline has primarily been drawn from [Wikipedia]( and the [Historic Royal Palaces]( websites.;xNLx;;xNLx;

1066-04-01 00:00:00

The Tower Founded

The first structures of what would become the Tower of London are built for William the Conqueror. It is believed they were made from timber, and were replaced by the White Tower when it was built.

1066-04-01 00:00:00

William I

Also known as William the Conqueror, William was the cousin of the childless English king Edward the Confessor. It was understood that William had been named as Edward's successor, but Edward named another his successor on his deathbed. William invaded England to claim what he saw as rightly his own, and won.

1078-04-01 00:00:00

The White Tower Built

The White Tower forms the heart of the Tower of London.

1087-04-01 00:00:00

William II

William II was the third son of William I - his elder brother inherited Normandy, whilst William II inherited England. According to his contemporary chroniclers, William II was an unpopular king. He died in a hunting accident in 1100, and left behind no heirs.

1100-04-01 00:00:00

Henry I

Henry I was the fourth son of William I, and claimed the English throne on his brother William II's death. He invaded Normandy and imprisoned his eldest brother Robert, putting the two territories under a single ruler again. His only legitimate son died, and he planned to make his daughter Matilda and her husband Geoffrey of Anjou successors, but the throne was claimed by his nephew Stephen instead.

1101-12-25 00:00:00

Ranulf Flambard Escapes

Ranulf Flambard is the first known prisoner of the Tower, and is also the first to escape.

1135-04-01 00:00:00


The nephew of Henry I, Stephen ruled over England during a period of civil war known as the Anarchy. Peace was finally achieved when he decided to name Henry II as his successor.

1135-04-01 00:00:00

The Anarchy

Since Henry I left no legitimate male heirs, a period of civil war between his nephew Stephen and his daughter Matilda broke out. Peace was ultimately reached when Stephen made Matilda's son Henry his successor.

1141-07-01 00:00:00

Control of Tower Sold

The Constable of the Tower, Geoffrey de Mandeville, sold his allegiance to Matilda when she was gaining during the Anarchy, and then sold his allegiance back to Stephen a year later when Stephen was ahead. When he tried to sell allegiance back to Matilda later, Stephen had him arrested and stripped of his lands and authority.

1154-04-01 00:00:00

Henry II

Henry II's reign was long and eventful, especially given that he ruled over not just England but much of western France. His early reign was defined by restoring lands and government damaged during the Anarchy. His marriage to Eleanor of Aquitane produced five sons and three daughters, which led to problems in his later reign. Several of his sons and his wife revolted against Henry starting in 1172, but Henry prevailed and defeated them by 1175. Two of his five sons eventually ruled England.

1155-12-25 00:00:00

Lord Chancellor Thomas Becket

Before Thomas Becket became the Archbishop of Canterbury, he was the Lord Chancellor and Keeper of Works at the Tower of London. Even though he was killed at Canterbury, his ghost is said to haunt the Tower of London.

1189-04-01 00:00:00

Richard I

Also known as Richard the Lionheart

1189-12-01 00:00:00

Defences Extended

The defences of the Tower were extended during Richard I's reign, and work was started on the Bell tower and the Wardrobe Tower.

1191-10-06 00:00:00

Tower Besieged

While Richard I was away on the Crusades, his brother John besieged the Tower of London as an attempt to claim the throne. The Tower fell in three days, but was reclaimed by Richard I on his return to England in 1194.

1199-04-01 00:00:00


Enter story info here

1210-07-30 00:00:00

Royal Menagerie at the Tower

The presence of lions at the Tower is first recorded. Wild and exotic animals, many of which were diplomatic gifts, lived at the Tower until the menagerie was moved to London Zoo in the 1830s.

1215-06-15 00:00:00

Tower Besieged and Magna Carta Signed

Baron Robert Fitzwalter laid siege to the Tower of London and only lifted the siege once John signed the Magna Carta.

1216-04-01 00:00:00

Henry III

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1216-06-15 00:00:00

Two New Towers Built

Major works took place at the Tower during Henry III's reign. This started off by building the Wakefield and Lanthorn Towers, as well as building some extensions to fortifications.

1238-07-30 00:00:00

Major Works

A curtain wall was built, as were nine additional towers and a moat.

1240-07-30 00:00:00

White Tower Whitewashed

The White Tower earned its name under Henry III when it was first whitewashed. The tradition continued for many years.

1255-07-30 00:00:00

Elephant Joined Menagerie

Louis IX of France gave an African elephant to Henry III as a gift. It was added Royal Menagerie housed at the Tower.

1272-04-01 00:00:00

Edward I

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1272-12-01 00:00:00

Defenses Further Extended

Another curtain wall was built to enclose the existing curtain wall to form a concentric castle, and an additional moat was added. The famous Traitor's Gate was also built during this period.

1278-11-21 03:41:44

Royal Mint

The Royal Mint is moved to the Tower of London, where it was located until its 1810 move to Little Tower Hill nearby.

1307-04-01 00:00:00

Edward II

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1321-11-01 00:00:00

Margaret de Clare Imprisoned

Margaret de Clare was the first woman imprisoned at the Tower - she was imprisoned for ordering an attack on the Queen Isabella's escort.

1327-04-01 00:00:00

Edward III

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1377-04-01 00:00:00

Richard II

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1381-06-13 00:00:00

Tower Breached

The Tower was breached during the Peasants' Revolt - the only time the Tower has been breached. Simon of Sudbury, Archbishop of Canterbury and Lord Chancellor was dragged out and killed.

1389-06-04 00:00:00

Tower Wharf Built

Geoffrey Chaucer, better known as the author of Canterbury Tales, oversaw Tower Wharf being built in his role as Clerk of Works.

1399-04-01 00:00:00

Henry IV

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1413-04-01 00:00:00

Henry V

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1422-04-01 00:00:00

Henry VI (1st reign)

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1455-04-01 00:00:00

War of the Roses

The War of the Roses was a power struggle between the Houses of York and Lancaster for the English throne.

1461-04-01 00:00:00

Edward IV (1st reign)

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1461-05-21 00:00:00

Tower Fortified

The Tower's defenses were fortified during the War of the Roses.

1470-04-01 00:00:00

Henry VI (2nd reign)

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1471-04-01 00:00:00

Edward IV (2nd reign)

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1471-05-21 00:00:00

Death of Henry VI

Henry VI died at the Tower of London where he was imprisoned. It is suspected he was murdered.

1480-05-01 00:00:00

The Princes in the Tower Disappeared

In one of the best-known events at the Tower of London, the two sons of Edward IV disappeared from the Tower never to be seen again.

1483-04-09 00:00:00

Edward V

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1483-04-09 00:00:00

Richard III

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1485-04-09 00:00:00

Henry VII

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1486-12-31 00:00:00

Rise of the Tudors

Richard III was killed at the Battle of Bosworth, and the throne was claimed by Henry VII. This marked the end of the War of the Roses and the rise of the Tudors.

1490-12-31 00:00:00

Yeoman Warders

The Yeoman Warders (also known as Beefeaters) were formed by Henry VII to guard the Tower of London.

1509-04-01 00:00:00

Henry VIII

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1519-08-03 00:00:00

St Peter ad Vincula Rebuilt

A chapel stood on this site since before the founding of the Tower of London. It was rebuilt for Henry VIII, and housed the remains of some of those executed at the Tower.

1531-07-06 00:00:00

Thomas More Executed

Thomas More, once a councillor to Henry VII, was executed on Tower Hill for refusing to recognise the King as Head of the Church. He was made a Catholic saint in 1935.

1536-05-17 00:00:00

Anne Boleyn Beheaded

Anne Boleyn, the second of six wives of Henry VIII, was imprisoned in the Tower for treason, judged guilty and then beheaded.

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