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"Mate angry. Fear there will be some trouble, as either he or the men will do some violence."

This is not the first time that the captain has been concerned that the first mate will become violent. Indeed, on 14 July the mate actually hit one of the men; after that, he only glares and threatens to keep the men in line by beating them with a handspike (17 July).

How common was corporal punishment of sailors at this time? In 1881, the Royal Navy suspended flogging with the cat o'nine tails, but boys under 18 could still be birched or caned. In 1898, the White Act abolished corporal punishment in the USA's merchant marine, while Germany banned most corporal punishment in their merchant marine in 1903. So it would seem that the Russian captain was in step with European thinking of the time, in denying his first mate permission to physically discipline the crew.

Bryan Alexander

Yes. And perhaps a bit of seeing the eastern (European) as darker, more violent, less ordered, backward.

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