Entering through the south side and ascending a spiral staircase, I came to the hall of weapons. All of the weapons were well polished and gleamed brilliantly. Back in Japan, the weapons in history books and novels had never captured my interest, but it was a delight to see them laid out like this before my own eyes. On the other hand, it was a fleeting delight, and their impression has all but left me, so maybe they were, in fact, nothing noteworthy. The only thing I remember is the armor. There was one suit in particular, I believe it was worn by Henry VI, that struck me as most remarkable. It was fashioned of steel, with a number of insets, but what impressed me most was its size. The man who donned it must have been enormous, standing some seven feet tall. As I stood there in awe of this armor, I heard the sound of footsteps. They drew up next to me and stopped. I turned and saw a Beefeater. The term Beefeater might invoke images of a man who eats nothing but beef, but such is not the case. They're the guards of the Tower. They sport headgear like a squashed silk hat and uniforms like art school frocks. Their thick sleeves are gathered at the ends, and their waists are belted. Their coats are patterned. The pattern is nothing more than a simple collection of straight lines formed into rectangles, like the patterns on an Ainu short coat. On occasion they carry spears, with feathers hanging down from the end of a short handle under the tip. These spears could be straight out of Chronicles of the Three Kingdoms. One of these Beefeaters had come up behind me and stopped. "Are you Japanese?" he asked with a smile. I wasn't engaging here with a modern Englishman, but a visitor from centuries past. Either that, or I'd slipped for a moment into times of old. I said nothing, but nodded lightly. He asked me to come with him, so I followed. He pointed out an old suit of Japanese armor, asking with his eyes if I'd seen it. I nodded in silence. He explained to me that it had come to Charles II, as a tribute, by way of Mongolia. I nodded a third time.