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The Secret Sharer

Joseph Conrad

Character Analysis The Second Mate

Although he is a minor character, the Captain's second mate serves to illustrate the lack of respect the crew feels toward the Captain. When the Captain first sights the Sephora and asks his crew if they know anything about it, the second mate looks down and smirks, as if in disbelief at the Captain's ignorance. This upsets the Captain, who notes, "It was not my part to encourage sneering on my ship," but he still feels unable to do anything about it.