Basilica of Sant’Antonino, Sorrento
Among the most picturesque churches of Sorrento, the Basilica of St Antonino stands in an old oratory which used to host the Saint’s remains who, according to legend, was a refugee in Sorrento during the Longobard invasions and lived there till his death. Built in the IX century, the basilica of Saint Antonino has a Latin-cross plan in three naves and 12 different columns coming from different buildings in Greek Roman architecture of the same area.
Inside the church hosts important paintings, among these, the works by Giovan Battista Lama and two canvas by Giacomo del Po depicting the siege of Sorrento in 1648 and the plague of 1656.
The main altar in convex marbles, comes from the former monastery of the SS. Trinità.
The sacristy of the Basilica contains important works: a silver statue of St. Antonino dating back to1564, the remains of a picturesque and ancient majolica floor and one of the most beautiful Neapolitan nativity scenes of the 7th century. The nativity, in permanent display, has been called the “small San Martino” for an analogy with the most famous nativity scenes in Naples.
Very interesting are also the votive offerings present in the church, most of them donated by sailors survived of shipwrecks. To St Antonino, patron saint of the town of Sorrento, is also attributed the famous miracle which tells how the saint rescued, in Marina Grande, a young boy that had been swallowed by a cetacean. In memory of this miracle people from Sorrento put in the hall outside the church two ribs of the cetacean. The crypt of the church, located below the main altar, contains the remains of St. Antonino, and an ancient wooden cross and a fifteenth-century fresco portraying Madonna delle Grazie.