The London Wall
Built by the Romans to protect Londinium
The London Wall was the defensive wall first built by the Romans around Londinium (Roman name for London), their strategically important port town on the River Thames, and subsequently maintained until the 18th century.
It is now the name of a road in the City of London running along part of the course of the wall.
Until the later Middle Ages the wall defined the boundaries of the City of London.
The wall had a number of gates around the outside that led to important Roman roads, leading to other towns in the country. The gates on the wall going clockwise from Ludgate in the west to Aldgate in the east were: Ludgate, Newgate, Cripplegate, Bishopsgate and Aldgate. Aldersgate, between Newgate and Cripplegate, was added c. 350, and Moorgate, between Cripplegate and Bishopsgate, was built later still, in the medieval period. These bring the number of gates up to the canonical seven, commemorated in London tradition and literature.
Some of the gates, though now long gone, are remembered by the areas or roads where the gates stood being named after them. Due to the rapid growth of the city, the number of gates was increased to cope with the extra traffic in the medieval period, and the walls were also strengthened and built upon.