This work, titled January, was created in 1515 by Simon Bening, a Flemish book illuminator. This image for the month of January, along with eleven others for February through December, is from the Da Costa Hours, one of many books of hours (medieval devotional books) that Bening illuminated. A book of hours from this time period was filled with, among other things, artwork, calendars, lists of feast days, and prayers.
All twelve of the monthly images are equally charming, so much so that I thought it would be neat to display them on the sidebar of my site. I’ve rigged up a widget that automatically displays Bening’s illustration for the current month. These images, floating around in a few places online, seem to have originated from The Morgan Museum in New York City.