Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Torre del Oro (The Gold Tower), Spain

Public Domain Photos: Torre del Oro (The Gold Tower), Spain

Torre del Oro (The Gold Tower), a dodecagonal watchtower in Seville, southern Spain, was built in the 13th century by the Berbers during the rule of Almohad dynasty to control access to Seville via the Guadalquivir River. The tower has three levels, and the third and uppermost level is circular and constructed in 1760.

The Torre del Oro served as a prison during the Middle Ages and as a secure storage tower for precious goods such as gold, silver, gems, pearls, spices, sugar, tobacco, silk, and other exotic goods brought from Spanish colonies to Spain by the Spanish treasure fleets (West Indies Fleet from Spanish Flota de Indias).

Currently the tower is a naval museum for engravings, letters, instruments and historic documents, and the museum outlines the naval history of Seville and the importance of Guadalquivir River.

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