A Mate is the second-in-command of a ship. In Arthur Ransome's Swallows and Amazons series, the mate of a crew is often responsible for logistics, food, and generally making sure any lower-ranked crew members maintain good health and sleeping habits.
Peggy, the mate of the "Amazon", seemed to be in charge of the ship's food, like Susan, the mate of the "Swallow" (SA11).
John says that the ship's surgeon is the mate .... He comes dancing on to the scene .... and how are your arms and legs and liver and lungs afeeling now so Susan says I ought to take some bandages and medicines and things. Titty says herbs, but then Mother settled the question No medicines .... Anyone who wants doctoring is invalided home (SA2).
The mate's business (is) to see to the stowage of the cargo so Susan sorted the firewood they had collected along the shore and packed it into "Swallow" (SA24).
When they are discussing the expedition, John says And the mate (that's Mother) will say .... (SW5).
- Susan Walker
- Peggy Blackett
- Dorothea Callum (Dorothea was doing very well, and the mate ought to be able to handle the ship as well as the captain. - PM27)
- Bill of the Death and Glory (never referred to as mate in any text, but holds similar responsibilities)