Despite of being one of the most important city in the Holy Roman Empire, Nuremberg did not have its own town hall until 14th century. Construction of Gothic edifice, located to the east from St. Sebald Church, and on the right, North bank, of Pegnitz River started in 1332 under direction of city's architect Philip Gross. Wars, Craftsmen's Uprising, recurrences of Black Death plague, pogroms of Jews, or later in 16th century conflicts between Catholics and Protestants, all these did not stop city from growth. Having acquired city rights along with other privileges Nuremberg flourished despite of all these calamities. Its most know and celebrated citizen, Albrecht Durer, designed and directed executing of wall and ceiling painting for Rathaus' great hall. It was, at the time, the largest wall and ceiling painting in Europe, surpassed only by Sistine Chapel. Durer's work was a part of major renovation works ordered by city council in the first half of 16th century. One hundred years later another great works were undertaken during which town hall acquired its elongated, monumental West Facade with Baroque portals. under city's master builder and architect Wolf Jacob Stromer. What we can see today is from the West its Renaissance elevation with strong influence of Italian architecture. South - East part of Town Hall building preserved its original Gothic elements. Beneath the Great Hall are located medieval dungeons where guided tour can take you to the torture chambers and prison cells. In Ehrenhalle, on the ground floor, are kept replicas of imperial regalia. Unfortunately, none of the Durer's wall paintings has survived. They were destroyed during WWII, after heavy bombing in 1944-45.