Art: Man for All Seasons: A Bruegel Calendar

IF there is a still point in the turning seasons, it is probably about now. Astronomers put it sooner—when the sun starts north, but before Christmas. Gardeners might date it later on, when the ground begins to thaw. But since 45 B.C., most people have gone along with Julius Caesar, who with more psychological insight than astronomical accuracy placed it at the day now called January 1.

No man observed the revolving seasons more intently than the painter known to posterity as Pieter Bruegel the Elder. He died just 400 years ago in Brussels....

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