From washing their clothes in village fountains to eating lunches next to bombed-out buildings, these rare colour photographs capture what daily life was like for soldiers away from the battlefield on the Western Front.
The images, captured using the Lumière brothers’ Autochrome colour process, were all taken in 1917, the fourth year of the First World War. They document how members of the Allied Forces spent quieter moments away from the fighting.
In one picture, a group of around half a dozen French soldiers is seen waiting outside a grocery store in Reims, a city in north-eastern France. Another shows four uniformed troops relaxing as they read the newspaper outside a kiosk in Rexpoede, less than 10 miles south of Dunkirk.
The remarkable set also shed light on the important role Senegalese servicemen played in the force. They are seen relaxing in a room lined with weapon, standing watch in a town and preparing to fight on the frontline alongside their French counterparts.
And while there are no photos of the gunfight or life in the trenches, the images do hint at the warfare going on beyond these seemingly peaceful snapshots of daily life.
Charred shells of buildings in Dunkirk were photographed in the wake of one German air raid, while other images show French soldiers camouflaging railway guns ahead of an offensive on German forces.
Senegalese soldiers serving in the French Army as infantrymen rest in a room surrounded by weapons in Saint-Ulrich, France on 16 June
A French soldier at a lookout in Eglingen, France on 26 June 1917. Right, French soldiers buy newspapers in Rexpoede on 6 September
A little girl is seen holding her doll as she sits next to two guns and a military knapsack on a street in Reims, northern France, in 1917
This dramatic photograph shows soldiers standing on a ridge above a crater 45m deep created by mines placed by British forces underneath German positions near Messines in West Flanders on 7 June 1917. Some 10,000 soldiers died in the blast
A French soldier has lunch in front of a damaged library in a square in Reims, in north-eastern France on 1 April 1917
French soldiers in front of a grocery store, with signs advertising liquor and wine in the windows, in the market square in Reims in 1917