Pelagia was born as the beautiful daughter of pagan parents, and was said to have caught the eye of the Emperor Diocletian's son. However, she had no desire to marry. One day, on the pretext of visiting her old nurse, she sought counsel from a bishop.
Under his inspiration, Pelagia was baptized. As a resultof this, the emperor's son turned against her, as did her mother. Together they reported her to the emperor in hopes that her faith would weaken under torture. Diocletian interviewed her, but he failed to persuade her to change her mind and heart about being a Christian.
There was only a single torture prepared for the beautiful girl: a hollow bull was made out of bronze and she was placed inside and roasted to death. The bishop is said to have reclaimed her remains and buried them. The young martyr died in 304.