Check it Out, Bro
The Brethren, 1381 Shepard Avenue, Hamden
May 5, 2013
This is cool.
It’s cool that someone decided keep this split glacial erratic in place when they built Shepard Avenue and the neighborhoods that surround it. It’s cool that someone decided to name it “The Brethren” for, as far as I can tell, unexplained reasons. It’s cool that the Hamden Land Conservation Trust was given the quarter acre plot around the giant boulder. And it’s cool that the HLCT takes such good care of this little property with mulching, steps, and a sort of 25 foot long trail through the boulder.
All that for a split glacial erratic boulder in Hamden. I love it.
As for the name, I really don’t have any clue as to why it is named “The Brethren.” But that word has always bothered me because it clearly is derived from root words and meanings for “brother.” And it’s not like women would have been welcome into brother or brotherly groups back in the day.
And yet, now in 2013, women can and do do everything men do. But I don’t feel comfortable including them when discussing things like the “brethren of craft beer enthusiasts” or the “brethren of CTMQ Geography nerds” simply because there are women involved in those groups.
I have read that women CAN be included in “brethrens” but it doesn’t feel right to me. (By the way, the word “sistren” used to exist. Some guy named Chaucer used it.)
Thankfully, the Hamden Land Conservation Trust has made this cool rock accessible to all women and men. You can walk through it, climb up parts of it, marvel at the power of a glaciar to deposit it here…
You just can’t take a good picture of it. Or, at least I can’t. (There are more pictures on my page here.)
My hikes of the Hamden Land Conservation Trust properties