All along the watchtower, princes kept the view
while all the women came and went, barefoot servants, too.
Outside in the distance a wildcat did growl,
Two riders were approaching, the wind began to howl
Written by Bob Dylan and famously sang by Jimi Hendrix
A watchtower was manly a type of fortification found on most castles and as the word suggests a place to watch from, in other words it was an observation place, and was the highest point of a castle, also known as “The keep” the basement of the keep served as a prison hence the name.
It was originally called a donjon a French word and in England became known as dungeon the word developed as slang for “The keep”
During a battle the more important members of the castle could retreat to it as a last resort. keeps also sometimes kept prisoners, one of the most famous towers in the world can be found in London, the tower of London also known as “The bloody tower, is well known for the many political prisoners it held including
- Anne Boleyn queen of England
- Catherine Howard, Queen of England
- King Henry VI
- The two princes Edward V and his brother Richard, Duke of York
- Sir Thomas More
- Thomas Cromwell
- Guy Fawkes
- Sir Walter Raleigh
- Rudolf Hess
- And in the 50s for just one night, the Kray Twins
It is considered so secure that the crown Jewels are kept there.
And finally a little trivia for you, ravens are residence at the tower, and a superstition claims that if the ravens ever leave, then the Kingdom of Great Britain will fall.