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In ancient times Ephesus was the home of the Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Today, the ruins of Ephesus are a major tourist attraction, especially for travellers on Mediterranean cruises. Ephesus remains a sacred site for Christians due to its association with several biblical figures, including St. Paul, St. John the Evangelist and the Virgin Mary.
In Greek and Roman times, Ephesus was the centre of worship of Diana (or Artemis), goddess of the hunt. The city's religious life centred on the Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. In addition to Diana, it is estimated that as many as 17 gods and goddess were worshipped in Ephesus at one time. The Temple of Artemis was badly damaged by a Goth invasion in 262 AD. It was rebuilt, but not to its former splendour.