My Cousin Rachel

by

Daphne du Maurier

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Seecombe Character Analysis

Steward at the Ashley estate. Seecombe has long been a servant of the Ashley family, and he is initially as displeased as Philip to hear of Ambrose’s marriage to Rachel, as there has traditionally not been a woman (servant or gentlewoman) living on the estate. However, Seecombe soon warms to Rachel when he learns that she, unlike the family servants, has not been provided for in Ambrose’s will. Eventually, Philip follows Seecombe’s lead in becoming enthusiastic about finally having a mistress in the Ashley home.
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Seecombe Character Timeline in My Cousin Rachel

The timeline below shows where the character Seecombe appears in My Cousin Rachel. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 3
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
...neighbors, including the vicar’s wife, Mrs. Pascoe, whom Philip detests, rejoice in the news. Only Seecombe, the steward at the Ashley house, feels as gloomy as Philip. He laments: “A mistress... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
...receded, and I saw the drawing-room become a lady’s boudoir […] and someone calling to Seecombe in a testy voice to bring more coal, the draught was killing her.” This image... (full context)
Chapter 7
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Philip informs Seecombe, the steward, that Rachel will be coming to stay. Seecombe is glad of the news,... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
...rooms, [his] house.” Around seven in the evening, Philip returns home and is informed by Seecombe that Rachel has arrived. Rachel has brought few possessions of her own, and all of... (full context)
Chapter 8
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
...repress it, he feels “a rising tide of something near hysteria” when speaking to Rachel. Seecombe brings in a tea tray for Rachel, and takes the dogs out with him. Rachel... (full context)
Chapter 13
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
...a hairpin in Philip’s lap and tells him, “Put it under your pillow, and watch Seecombe’s face at breakfast in the morning.” She then goes into another chamber of her room... (full context)
Chapter 14
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
...receives some formal calls at the house, and is “as successful with ‘the gentry,’ as Seecombe call[s] them, as […] with the humbler folk.” The servants at the Ashley estate rejoice... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
By the end of October, the fair weather breaks, and—at Seecombe’s suggestion—Philip decides to spend one rainy morning going through Ambrose’s old things. Rachel joins him,... (full context)
Chapter 15
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
During dinner, Seecombe asks whether Rachel has shown Philip the blue coverings she ordered for her bedroom. Philip... (full context)
Chapter 18
Guilt Theme Icon
...slab. Philip returns to the house, where he is immediately confronted by terrible news from Seecombe. Don, the retriever, has been injured; a large slab fell on him from the construction... (full context)
Chapter 22
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
...her bed, eating breakfast, the opened document on her tray. Rachel sends Philip away before Seecombe can see him. Her “cool voice” mutes Philip’s spirits slightly, but he realizes she is... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Downstairs, Seecombe presents Philip with a portrait of himself, and the two hang it in the hall... (full context)
Chapter 23
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
...is locked and she does not answer. In the morning, Philip has a terrible headache. Seecombe summons Rachel to Philip’s side, and Rachel decides to send for the doctor. Philip is... (full context)
Chapter 25
Guilt Theme Icon
...the library. He accuses her of having a secret, but before he can say more, Seecombe summons the pair to dinner. After dinner, Rachel flees upstairs but Philip enters her bedroom... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
...a step toward Rachel, and she moves away toward the bell-rope, saying she will call Seecombe if Philip tries to touch her. Defeated, Philip asks that Rachel meet Rainaldi at the... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
The next night, Rainaldi comes to dinner at the Ashley house. Seecombe accidentally shows Rainaldi into the library, where Philip is alone. The two have a tense... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
...smashes the shreds into the ground with his foot. When he returns home, he finds Seecombe with the post-bag and sees a letter to Rachel from Rainaldi. Philip regrets that Seecombe... (full context)