Entry to Tower of London
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Henry VI (2nd reign)
Enter story info here
The White Tower Built
The White Tower forms the heart of the Tower of London.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.