This church is one of the most important religious sights in Atrani. Indeed, it dates to around the 10th century and during the middle ages it had the function of hosting the solemn ceremony aimed at crowning the Duke of the Maritime Republic of Amalfi. Within the church, the ceremonial “berretta”, or “cap”, was placed on the head of the Duke, and it is thought that the name “de Birecto” derives from “berretta”. In subsequent centuries, the church seems to have maintained its important public role and became somewhat of a headquarters for the parliaments of the surrounding towns.
As mentioned, the church was most likely constructed sometime in the 10th century, though it has been heavily modified throughout the years and presents architectural elements belonging to different artistic schools. The façade is neoclassical in style and sits atop an atrium characterized by an open 14th century loggia with cross vaults, on which can still be seen ancient polychrome decorations. The door is bronze, with silver figures dating to the late 11th century, constructed in Constantinople. The interior of the church is divided into three naves and is decorated with floral motifs dating to the 1800s. It contains an impressive marble shelter, of clear Byzantine origin, which dates to the 12th century and a large bronze bell that dates to 1298.