Hell Hath No Fury Like a Woman Scorned: The London Tower’s Female Ghosts

The Tower of London is said to be one of the most haunted spots in Britain, where many ghosts of former prisoners and executed souls have been spotted roaming about the grounds and Tower. On the grounds, phantom funeral carriages have been seen, as well as unknown foggy visions wandering about the battlements. The grounds are also the spot where phantom squads of soldiers have been sighted to be marching in formation. Many of these ghosts happen to be women and many of these women have been scorned in some way or the other.


A gruesome reenactment of the death of Countess of Salisbury is said to be “performed” by a group of ghosts who retell the story of when the countess refused to lay her head on a chopping block that was set for her execution. This was the way that common treasoners were executed. She tried to flee and was pursued about the tower grounds while pieces of her body were hacked out of her by the executioner’s axe.


One of the most well-known of the female apparitions is Anne Boleyn, who was the second wife of Henry VIII. She was beheaded on false adultery and treason charges. Boleyn spent about two weeks in the Tower of London before she met her untimely death. Many have claimed to have seen the headless ghost of Anne Boleyn walking through the corridors of the White Tower.


There are many theories regarding her betrayal by her husband. Some say that she was falsely accused of adultery so that her husband could get rid of her because she was unable to produce a male heir. He was also having an affair with one of Anne’s maids, Jane Seymour. Another theory regarding Anne’s ill fate deals with the fetus she miscarried in 1536. It was said that the fetus was deformed, which upset the King. During those times, it was believed that God’s anger produced birth defects. Henry accused Anne of adultery so that he could claim that the deformed fetus was not his own. 


Boleyn’s ghost is also to have been sighted roaming about the Queen’s House moving towards the Chapel of Saint Peter ad Vincula. As her ghost reaches the chapel, she is said to have moved down the aisle to the location of her grave that can be found under the altar.


Another wife of Henry VIII’s is said to be a ghost within the Tower. There have been claims that the ghost of Catherine Howard can be heard screaming for help within the corridor in front of the area she was kept in before she was executed.

Other female ghosts that have been sighted within the Towers of London include the ghost of a 16-year-old Lady Jane Grey, who has been spotted on the battlements, appearing on the anniversary of the beheading of her husband. Another ghost of a “gray” woman has been recorded, who appears in mourning attire. She is described as having a black shadow in the space where her facial features would be located.