Wow! “Fen” is a common noun. I still receive Tuesday Tactics in my inbox on, well, Tuesday mornings. It’s a weekly email from Oakley Signs & Graphics. Now, I’ll admit, I’ve never bought anything from Oakley Signs & Graphics up to this point but I do find its Tuesday Tactics to be the one newsletter that I haven’t yet to unsubscribe from. And that’s really saying something.
Yesterday I learned, from Tuesday Tactics, about the word “fen”. I can’t believe that I’ve never known this word until now. Growing up in Boston, we all know about The Fens and Fenway Park and maybe even a parkway named Fenway and, most likely, many of us for the first time saw Fenway Station, one of the many mysterious places on those giant MBTA maps we studied while we were waiting for a bus or a train as kids. There’s also the MBTA’s lesser known Fenwood Road Station. I just assumed that “Fenway” was a person. Nope.
As an aside, I’ve thought the Kenways, most notably Edward James Kenway and Haytham E. Kenway, of the Assassin’s Creed series, got their name as a contraction of Kenmore Square and The Fenway neighborhoods. Maybe I’m reading too much into that? Maybe Not? Assassin’s Creed III was partially set in colonial Boston.
So, what is a “fen”? From Vocabulary.com:
A fen is similar to a marsh, a mire, a swamp, or a bog. In all of these wetland ecosystems, the water level tends to rise and fall, leaving them constantly soggy to some degree. Fens are distinguished by the kinds of plants that grow there, including tall grasses and moss, and by the acidity of the water. The word fen comes from the Old English fenn, which means “mud, mire, dirt, or marsh.”
Now think about Boston and its history. Boston, initially named Trimountaine, was renamed Boston on September 7th, 1630. “Fen” is an old word, we now know, derived from an Old English word “fenn”. Boston is one of the oldest cities in North America. If I were a Bostonian in 1630 then I would’ve, if giving directions to a lost Puritan trying to maybe get to Boston Neck, said “go by way of the fen” or, more easily, “go by fen way“.
And there you have it…
Jonathan Bowen Real Estate, LLC wants to be your real estate broker. Want to live on a neighborhood that sits on a fen? If so, below is a list of all condominiums and single family properties available in “The Fenway” neighborhood. Like one? If so, let us know and we’ll get started. I promise that I only know of one property in The Fenway with piling issues.