79-page catalogue reveals gadgets used to save Brit troops in WWII
A catalogue, which details top secret designs for gadgets which British prisoners of war used to fool the enemy, offers a remarkable and fascinating insight into the inventive methods used by soldiers during the Second World War.
They include gold teeth containing hidden compasses, cameras disguised as cigarette lighters and hidden hacksaws.
The extraordinary 79-page catalogue was designed by real-life Q, inventor Christopher Clayton-Hutton. He was an intelligence officer for a secret department of the War Office called M19.
The department often provided troops with ordinary everyday objects which would be used to potentially save their lives in the face of the enemy.
One of the most fascinating gadgets used were cloth maps which were printed on silk with non-running ink. They could be hidden in a pack of cards or a chess piece.
About 400,000 of these maps were printed during the war and 17,000 troops used them.
The catalogue is now being sold at auction.
"Very few of these catalogues are known to have survived and the remaining copies form rare pieces of secret service history. They give a fascinating insight into the ingenuity employed to assist the war effort," the Daily Mail quoted Lionel Willis, from Bonhams auctioneers, as telling Yahoo.
Called 'Per Ardua Libertas', which means Liberty Through Adversity, the catalogue was designed for American intelligence officers in 1942.