The Sten Gun’s role in the Second World War made it one of the most famous weapons of all time.
Extremely simple to strip and assemble, it was manufactured by the thousands. As well as becoming a standard infantry weapon it was dropped in huge quantities to resistance movements in occupied Europe, since as a light and easily-concealable weapon it was considered ideal for use by civilians – including women. Its weaknesses were as famous as its strengths – it was especially notorious for jamming, as it did when it was aimed at SS overlord Reinhard Heydrich when his car was ambushed in Prague in 1942 by British trained Czech patriots. (Heydrich was fatally injured by a grenade after grass stuck in the Sten’s firing mechanism).