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What is the City of London and why is it not London?

Inside the capital of the United Kingdom, there is a whole city with its own police, laws, and mayor, and even the country's monarch needs permission to enter. This city is called the City of London.

If you go to London, you will definitely see a district with glass skyscrapers called the City. This place is often called the financial capital of the world. It's hard to believe, but this area with new architecture is older than London itself.

The London City was founded by the Romans in 50 BC. This is the same area that was also called 'Londinium'. The city existed for hundreds of years, but after the fall of the Roman Empire, it was abandoned.

In the Middle Ages, Anglo-Saxon tribes decided to restore the ancient fortress and city to defend themselves against Viking raids.

Later, the Norwegian king William the Conqueror attempted to unite England, but was unable to take the City of London and decided to grant the city autonomy in exchange for joining England. This gave the city special rights, and its citizens were able to elect their own mayor, sheriff, and create their own laws.

Next to the City, Westminster emerged as the main residence of the king and the governmental capital of England.

As the cities grew, the entire area around the City of London and Westminster merged under the name London, since the residents referred to the City and the surrounding lands in that way.

Despite the merger, the City, also known as 'The Square Mile' due to its size, retained its autonomy and was not part of London until the end of the 20th century.

Today, the City of London is part of the capital of the United Kingdom but also has its own mayor, sheriff, local parliament, and laws. For example, companies can vote in the city, and in order for the monarch to enter the city, they must receive personal permission from the city's mayor in the form of a symbolic ceremony of the sword transfer, reminding of the city's special history.

Bus stop in London with the coat of arms of the City of London


March 19, 2024 02:56 pm



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