The Royal Court once stood adjacent to Powder Tower. This was the residence of Bohemia kings from 1383 until 1515. The palace then became a seminary and later an army barracks before being torn down in 1903 to make way for the Municipal House. Six years after Měšťanská beseda was built, it witnessed history when the Czechoslovak Declaration of Independence was announced here in 1918. Municipal House is primarily a concert hall but also a venue for exhibitions and conferences. It has a magnificent Art Nouveau design inside and out, thanks to the talents of Osvald Polívka. The façade is enhanced with a mosaic called “Homage to Prague” painted by Karel Špillar. The statues bearing lanterns on their shoulders are allegories for the humiliation and rebirth of the nation. They were created in 1911 by Ladislav Šaloun, the same artist who sculpted the Jan Hus Monument in Old Town Square.