Original Portuguese WWII M1940 Steel Combat Helmet With Liner And Chin Strap

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is an extremely attractive and complete example of the Portuguese M1940 helmet which still has variants in use to this day. The helmet is complete with an original leather chin strap and Swiss style 3-panel leather liner with an aluminum band. The helmet retains almost all of the original paint, but there is signs of evident wear with paint chipping and cracking. This was a helmet that saw definite use during the WWII era and possibly the years after the war. There are a few names and markings handwritten on the liner panels as well as initials painted in white on the rear skirt.

Truly a remarkable helmet which is becoming increasingly difficult to find, especially in this condition.

Comes more than ready for research and display!

The M1940 helmet was the primary combat helmet used by the Armed Forces of Portugal, from the 1940s to the late 1960s. The M1940-63 and the M1940-63 Paratrooper are improved versions of the M1940 helmet that were introduced in the 1960s and are still in limited use. Besides being used by the Armed Forces, the M1940 and the M1940-63 helmets were also used by the Portuguese Security Forces, including the Public Security Police and the National Republican Guard (GNR). This helmet was largely replaced by the PASGT in the early 1990s.

Until the early 1940s, the standard combat helmet of the Portuguese Army was the Brodie helmet, adopted during World War I, two versions of which were in use, referred to in Portuguese service as the M1916 and the M1917.

In the late 1930s, it was decided to replace the M1916 and M1917 with a new modern helmet. Several foreign helmets were tested and finally a Portuguese design was adopted in 1940, being designated M1940. The M1940 was allegedly inspired in the design of helmets used by the Portuguese soldiers of the 15th century. It was made of steel and manufactured by the Fábrica de Braço de Prata (military factory of Braço de Prata) in Lisbon.

In the early 1960s, a modernized version of the M1940 was developed and adopted in 1963 as the M1940-63. The M1940-63 had a variant specifically designed for use by paratroopers.

From 1961 to 1974, the M1940 and the M1940-63 helmets were used in combat by the Portuguese Armed and Security Forces in the Portuguese Overseas War.

Although largely replaced in the late 1980s by modern kevlar combat helmets, the M1940-63 is still in limited use, namely as a ceremonial helmet used by the Portuguese Army's Military Police.

Portugal during World War II
At the start of World War II in 1939, the Portuguese Government announced on 1 September that the 550-year-old Anglo-Portuguese Alliance remained intact, but since the British did not seek Portuguese assistance, Portugal was free to remain neutral in the war and would do so. In an aide-mémoire of 5 September 1939, the British Government confirmed the understanding. As Adolf H's occupation swept across Europe, neutral Portugal became one of Europe's last escape routes. Portugal was able to maintain its neutrality until 1944, when a military agreement was signed to give the United States permission to establish a military base in Santa Maria in the Azores and thus its status changed to non-belligerent in favor of the Allies.

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