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building to the west of where it stood, and on the eastern side it was defended by a strong- tower where the Sun Hotel now stands.
In Porter's Lane may be seen part of the south wall of a building once of considerable size, to which Sir Henry Englefield gave the name of " Canute's Palace." Now although the windows are of Norman workmanship, the walling might from its appearance be older, and on the whole there seems no improbability in Englefield's idea. At any rate, it is not likely that Canute could have found better quarters ; and that energetic monarch must have been often in the neighbourhood seeing to the defence of this important stretch of coast.
Along the road to the west, some excavations made a couple of years ago revealed the foundations of Saint Barbara's Tower and a square tower. Barbara, before she was a saint, was a strong-minded lady of an early date, who got herself shut up for life in this tower by refusing to marry somebody or other. It seems a rather severe punishment, but in those rude times feminine disinclinations were apt to be made light of. Those people who cannot see any striking likeness to Queen Elizabeth in the female figure in the Town's coat of arms, may like to fancy that the portrait of the lady looking out at the top of the tower represents Miss Barbara.
The wall, turning somewhat, ran north-west along the road between the Pier entrance and the Pier Hotel, forming an angle at the site occupied by the premises of the Royal Southern Yacht Club, from which spot it is practically continuous to the West-gate, in connection with which are the old Guard Room on one side and some secret passages in the wall on the other. Now we arrive at the entrance of Blue Anchor Lane, with the Norman house known as King John's Palace at the corner. This is an interesting relic—part of one of the few domestic buildings of its period of which remains exist—and it contains several curiosities collected by its present owner, Mr. W. F. G. Spranger. The stone chimney which is corbelled out over Blue Anchor Lane, is of the same age as the rest of the house, and is a feature rare enough in construction in the Norman period, and still more rare in preservation.
Distinct traces of Norman workmanship have been discovered in the old walls in the neighbourhood of Simnel Street; and further along northward, under the site of the Castle, there is a Norman barrel-vaulted chamber about fifty-five feet long, twenty feet wide and twenty-five feet high. The stone sides of the doorway giving access to this vault will be seen to be much worn in grooves by the ropes used in landing goods from the boats that lay moored outside when the entrance served the Castle and when the waves lapped the foot of the wall. The Castle had thus direct access to the waterside, communicating by secret passages and flights of steps through this vault and possibly through others with the Castle Quay which, distinct from the West Quay, was probably just outside the vault.
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