Her Majesty's Royal Palace and Fortress of the Tower of London: How aptly the title states the major roles of this iconic structure. Rising next to the River Thames, it was once the largest nonecclesiastical building in England and a focus of power for each new monarch.
Over the centuries, the structure has been renovated, enlarged, and enhanced. As the architecture has changed, so has the Tower’s purpose. It’s been a fortress, a prison, and a palace. It’s served as the Royal Mint, displayed a menagerie of exotic animals, housed the crown jewels, and become the home of the six royal ravens, whose presence, tradition says, keeps the kingdom from falling.