Monday, September 6, 1999 Published at 11:54 GMT 12:54 UK
Explorer's relics unfrozen
Scott (second from right) and his heroic party
Relics from Captain Robert Scott's doomed expedition to the South Pole have gone on show at Christie's auction house in London.
One of the prize lots is the Union Flag that Scott flew from his sledge and can be seen in many of the famous black and white photographs taken at the time.
Each pipe should go for at least £1,500.
There are also parts of the primus stove Scott and his companions used to cook their last meal before their fuel ran out. But perhaps the oddest lot is an uneaten biscuit.
"It doesn't look very appetising," says Nick Lambourne of Christie's," but after a long day's sledding on the Antarctic continent it was probably manna from heaven."
The death of Scott and four fellow explorers has become fixed in the British psyche as an epic tale of bravery in the face of adversity.
Scott and his heroic party fought ferocious weather to return to their supply depot but died in their tent just a few miles from fresh supplies on, or shortly after, 29 March, 1912. Their bodies were later recovered, together with Scott's diaries, and many of the items that are now up for sale at Christie's.
"The family, in the past, has been very grateful to the nation and given things to the Scott Polar Institute. If anyone does get indignant, they can quite easily help the country obtain these things by giving a cheque to the Antarctic Heritage Trust in Cambridge."
The 17 September sale at Christie's will include 130 lots relating to the pioneers of Polar exploration, from Franklin and Ross to Scott and Shackleton.