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The amphitheatre is an oval-shaped building originally used for gladiator performances. Built at the beginning of the 2nd century, it could accommodate up to 12,000 spectators. During the reign of Heliogabalus at the beginning of the 3rd century, the amphitheatre underwent various changes. On 21 January 259, Bishop Fructuosus and his deacons Augurius and Eulogius were burned alive by order of the governor of Tarraco, Emilian. It was yet another consequence of the application of the edicts decreed against Christians by the Emperors Valerian and Gallienus. Between the 6th and 7th centuries, the Church built a basilica in memory of the martyrs on the exact spot where the saints were immolated. In the 12th century, a new temple dedicated to Santa Maria del Miracle (St Mary of the Miracle) was erected over that structure. In the 16th century, Trinitarian monks built a convent next to the temple. The community used the space until the end of the 18th century.