Try Our Apps


Supposedly vs. Supposably

first mate

the officer of a merchant vessel next in command beneath the captain.
Also called chief mate, chief officer, first officer, mate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for first-mate
Historical Examples
  • You know a lot of us took charge of the Spitfire, and set the captain and first-mate adrift, off Valparaiso.

    Adrift on the Pacific Edward S. Ellis
  • After the first greetings the first-mate began to look round the cabin.

    Mother Carey's Chicken George Manville Fenn
  • The abject-looking wretch shrank away, and the first-mate gave an angry stamp upon the deck.

    Mother Carey's Chicken George Manville Fenn
  • The first-mate, Lapworth, also became a favourite with us all.

    Five Years in New Zealand Robert B. Booth
  • “Here, Widgeon, I told you to fetch one of the dock police,” said the first-mate fiercely.

    Mother Carey's Chicken George Manville Fenn
  • The first-mate went to the tack, and the second to the sheet.

    Afloat And Ashore James Fenimore Cooper
  • "We had a narrow squeak of it, Mr. Ryan," he said to the first-mate.

    Maori and Settler G. A. Henty
  • Stimson was in the first-mate's watch, and the latter approached that old sea-dog with a wish to keep himself awake by conversing.

    The Sea Lions James Fenimore Cooper
  • One morning, when the lofty Andes had just appeared in sight, he summoned his first-mate to his bedside.

  • Five of the hands had been washed overboard, another three men were down below badly hurt, and the first-mate had his leg broke.

British Dictionary definitions for first-mate

first mate

an officer second in command to the captain of a merchant ship Also called first officer
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for first mate

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for first

Scrabble Words With Friends