Richard the Poor of Ely

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I prefer not to have photos of me online.
Resides: Crown Province of Ostgardr
Status: Active
Awards: Order of Precedence
Device 1.jpg
Per bend, azure and vair of sable and argent, in sinister chief six mullets, or.
Award & Office Badges
Companion of the Order of the PelicanCourtBarony

Companion of the Order of the MauncheCompanion of the Order of the Silver CrescentTerpsichore

Order of the SeahorseOrder of the Sea Dog Journeyman Brewer


Master Richard the Poor of Ely, OP, CM, CSC, et al. discovered the SCA in college back in the early 1980s. In the Canton of Fennbrycg, he learned how much fun dancing is, and assisted Lord Theodoric Orbus in running the Pepperer's Guild. After traveling through Dragonship Haven (where he started writing short articles for the newsletter because he enjoys seeing his name in a byline), he settled in the Shire of An Dubhaigeainn. There, he realized that it actually took work to make the fun happen, so he began taking on assorted jobs and offices.

Life soon found him in the Canton of Northpass, where he put everything he'd learned along the way to good use. Taking on offices, teaching dance, a bit more writing, and all that. A special project for the Brewers' Guild got him named a Journeyman (he still treats the title as an "honorary" one) in the Guild. Awards began to pile up as well.

These days, when he's not wondering what happened[Citation Needed], he runs the (usually) annual John Barleycorn Memorial Brewing Competition, lets his curiosity wander, and enjoys finding "remnants" of medieval life in the modern world.


Richard was born around 1200 to a woodworker in the outskirts of Ely, England. The last and definitely least of many children, when it became clear he was useless around the home, he was dumped off at the local monastery with a "Here, see what you can do with him" (it is suspected there was some money involved).

There he showed an aptitude for the scholarly arts. A backroom deal (the details are unknown to Richard) got him a place as a student at the nearby university in Cambridge. He excelled at the quadrivium (the trivium, not so much) enough to make something of himself. He traveled across Europe, learning and teaching, with stops at the universities in Paris, Bologna, and Salerno.

He is currently hanging around the court of Emperor Frederick in Sicily, where he is hoping to be appointed to a faculty position at the university in Naples. Or perhaps he'll join the followers of Dominic de Guzmán, and take a back office clerical position as they deal with the heretics in southern France.

Offices & Positions

  • Sep 1991 - Jan 1993: Seneschal, Northpass
  • Jan 1993 - Jan 1997: Deputy Seneschal, Southern Region
  • 1998(?) - Jan 2018: Historian, Ostgardr
  • Nov 2001 - Aug 2005: Minister of Lists, Ostgardr
  • 2008 – May 2013: Exchequer, Northpass
  • Sept 2013 – Jan 2016: Exchequer, Ostgardr

Event Staff

  • Sep 2002 – Barleycorn, Canton of Northpass, reservations/troll
  • Mar 2007 - Bear's Tavern, Canton of Northpass, co-autocrat
  • May 2007 - “Picnic on the Rhine”, Canton of Northpass, autocrat
  • Mar 2009 - Bear's Tavern, Canton of Northpass, reservations/troll
  • Sep 2009 – Barleycorn, Canton of Northpass, reservations/troll
  • Sep 2010 – Barleycorn, Canton of Northpass, reservations/troll
  • Sep 2011 - Barleycorn, Canton of Northpass, reservations/troll
  • Sep 2014 – Barleycorn, Canton of Northpass, co-autocrat

Projects & Publications

  • “Keeping Secrets: An Introduction to Renaissance Cryptography” - Pikestaff Arts and Sciences issue, Spring 2006
  • “The Chaos of the Mind” - Seahorse, Mar 2008
  • “Medieval Computer Games” - Seahorse, Jun 2009
  • “Archimedes' Stomach-Churner” - Seahorse, May 2011

In Case of Court

Just let me know that I have to be at that event.

More Information

It’s pronounced “EEL-y”, as in “full of eels”, which is how the town got its name (it’s surrounded by marshy ground that is the home of a lot of freshwater eels).