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Line of Kings

Marvel at the historic armour of Henry VIII, Charles I and James II.

Marvel at the historic armour of Henry VIII, Charles I and James II.

Royal armour and surprising tales

The magnificent tournament armour of Henry VIII and the gilded armours of Charles I and James II take pride of place in the Line of Kings in the White Tower.

The fabulous silvered and engraved armour of Henry VIII was made for the young, slender King in c1510-15. This is the earliest of the six surviving armours of Henry VIII, made for him when he cut a fine figure on horseback!

There are many other rare and superbly-crafted pieces made for noblemen as well as common soldiers. The Royal Armouries have always featured extraordinary curiosities - discover the armours of the 'Giant', the 'Dwarf' and the gift from the 'Great Mogul'.

These intriguing objects may not be quite what they seem...

In partnership with the Royal Armouries.

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Included in palace admission (members go free)

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'The horses richly caparisoned, seemed ready to rush into battle.'

César de Saussure, 1725

Three suits of armour in cases in the Line of Kings Exhibition in the White Tower of the Tower of London. The two on the left were made for King Henry VIII (as a young boy and as an older man) and the one on the right was made for King Charles I.

The Line of Kings was created in the 17th century and is one of the earliest museum exhibits. It was installed for King Charles II by the Royal Armouries to promote the restored monarchy.

Historic armours were displayed on life-like wooden figures, including those of Henry VIII, Charles I and later James II, in a parade of beautifully-carved horses.

Queens and less popular monarchs were left out as they didn't play a part in this royal message to early Tower visitors.

Over the centuries the Line of Kings has been re-arranged a number of times. Today, you can enjoy a display that combines this fascinating Tower story with amazing royal objects and their individual histories.

Centuries of visitors

When you visit the Line of Kings, you're following in the footsteps of 350 years of visitors from all over the world.

Read what visitors throughout history have thought of the exhibition, and leave your own impressions for future guests.

HISTORY OF THE LINE OF KINGS EXHIBITION TIMELINE OF LINE OF KINGS

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  • Families
  • Things to see

Armoury in Action

Shoot arrows, assemble firearms and brandish a sword in this exciting, hands-on experience in the White Tower.

  • Open
  • Tower of London
  • Included in palace admission (members go free)
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  • Things to see

White Tower

Marvel at the imposing White Tower, a magnificent example of Norman architecture at the heart of the Tower of London.

  • Open
  • Tower of London
  • Included in palace admission (members go free)
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  • Tours and talks

White Tower Tours

Explore the beautiful Chapel of St John the Evangelist and hear tales of famous old residents at the Tower with an expert warden.

  • Cancelled until further notice
  • Tower of London
  • Included in palace admission (members go free)
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