Rephotography is the act of taking a photo of a place that has already been photographed some time ago. While being a challenge for the photographers to recreate all the angles as close as possible to the original, these images also speak wonders about the passage of time.

Whether we're looking at expanding cities or melting glaciers, these side-by-side comparisons tell fascinating stories about the state of the world we live in as well as humanity's abilities to create and destroy.

A few subreddits -- most notably, r/OldPhotosInRealLife -- have created huge archives of these photos, so we're inviting you to take a look at some of the most fascinating ones.

#1

My Grandfather And I In Tokyo, 73 Years Apart

My Grandfather And I In Tokyo, 73 Years Apart

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Verena Gitterle
Community Member
5 months ago

how the tree is grown!

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Looking at some of these photos, human progress seems self-evident. City skylines keep expanding, people within them switch from horses to cars... But that's just the visuals. How do we actually calculate our advancement?

For this task, many use the Human Development Index (HDI).The HDI provides a single index measure to capture three key dimensions of our development: a long and healthy life, access to knowledge, and a decent standard of living.

#2

The Arctic 103 Years Ago Compared To Today

The Arctic 103 Years Ago Compared To Today

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Erin
Community Member
5 months ago

Oh wow....That's more than a bit alarming.

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The Human Development Index utilizes four key metrics: 1) life expectancy at birth – to assess a long and healthy life,

 2) expected years of schooling – to assess access to knowledge for the young generation, 3) average years of schooling – to assess access to knowledge for the older generation, 4) gross national income (GNI) per capita – to assess the standard of living.

#3

Chichen Itza 1892 And Now

Chichen Itza 1892 And Now

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Jeff
Community Member
5 months ago

It’s great that they preserved it by cleaning it up

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In 2019, the United Nations Development Programme used the HDI to find out which countries are the most developed. The first place went to Norway, Switzerland came in second, and Ireland was third. The US tied the UK for the 15th spot.

Naturally, the HDI -- just like most similar metrics -- has been criticized. Mostly, for the alleged lack of consideration of technological development or contributions to human civilization. But it remains one of the most used measures worldwide to calculate how advanced countries are.

#4

Bike Ride In Berlin Kreuzberg ( ~1985 / 2018 )

Bike Ride In Berlin Kreuzberg ( ~1985 / 2018 )

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Ben Smith
Community Member
5 months ago

Much better now

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#5

Utrecht, Netherlands 1982 vs. 2020. They Converted The Highway To A Canal

Utrecht, Netherlands 1982 vs. 2020. They Converted The Highway To A Canal

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Young Minami Kotaro
Community Member
5 months ago

Its great.. very useful..

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#6

The Shambles In York (UK) Inspiration For Diagon Alley From Harry Potter. Late 1800s And Today

The Shambles In York (UK) Inspiration For Diagon Alley From Harry Potter. Late 1800s And Today

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Verena Gitterle
Community Member
5 months ago

could be in Ankh-Morpork

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#7

Bishan Park, 30 Years Apart. Top Pic, 1988. Bottom Pic, 2020

Bishan Park, 30 Years Apart. Top Pic, 1988. Bottom Pic, 2020

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kjorn
Community Member
5 months ago

much better now!

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#8

World War I Trenches

World War I Trenches

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Michelle Line
Community Member
5 months ago

Much much better now.

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#9

Moscow Pictures 20 Years Apart

Moscow Pictures 20 Years Apart

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Norma
Community Member
5 months ago

I love seeing the older buildings renovated/maintained/lit so beautifully!

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#10

The Flatiron Building, New York (1917 And 2012)

The Flatiron Building, New York (1917 And 2012)

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Ben Smith
Community Member
5 months ago

Stands the test of time

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#11

Atomic Bomb Dome - 75 Years Later

Atomic Bomb Dome - 75 Years Later

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ProductofNZ
Community Member
5 months ago

They left it largely untouched. There is still masonry debris surrounding the building. It is theorized that the atom bomb detonated above this building as the walls were not blown out by a horizontal blast wave but rather a vertical force that caved in the roof.

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#12

The Banyan Tree In Maui. Top Photo Taken By My Grandfather While He Was Stationed There During Wwii. Bottom I Took Without Knowing His Photo Existed

The Banyan Tree In Maui. Top Photo Taken By My Grandfather While He Was Stationed There During Wwii. Bottom I Took Without Knowing His Photo Existed

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Daria Z
Community Member
5 months ago

Beautiful!

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#13

The Changing Face Of St Bartholomew-The-Great's Gatehouse In Smithfield, Which Was Built In 1595 And Some Point Bricked Over. It Was Bombed During A Ww1 Zeppelin Raid Knocking Off Some Bricks Revealing Its Tudor Half-Timbered Facade. It Was Restored To How It Looks Today. 1916 vs. Now

The Changing Face Of St Bartholomew-The-Great's Gatehouse In Smithfield, Which Was Built In 1595 And Some Point Bricked Over. It Was Bombed During A Ww1 Zeppelin Raid Knocking Off Some Bricks Revealing Its Tudor Half-Timbered Facade. It Was Restored To How It Looks Today. 1916 vs. Now

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MrTree1779
Community Member
5 months ago

I've always loved timber framing: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timber_framing

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#14

My Hometown, Approx 100 Years Ago vs. My Pic From Last Week.... Not So Much Has Changed...

My Hometown, Approx 100 Years Ago vs. My Pic From Last Week.... Not So Much Has Changed...

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Destiney Torres
Community Member
5 months ago

Oh I love those outfits

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#15

My Great Grandfather And I Trained At The Same Location, Exactly 100 Years Apart. He Left For France Shortly After This Was Taken In 1917

My Great Grandfather And I Trained At The Same Location, Exactly 100 Years Apart. He Left For France Shortly After This Was Taken In 1917

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Norma
Community Member
5 months ago

This is amazing!

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#16

Singapore 2000 vs. Now

Singapore 2000 vs. Now

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Young Minami Kotaro
Community Member
5 months ago

STUNNING..!!

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#17

1920 / 2020 . San Francisco, Ca

1920 / 2020 . San Francisco, Ca

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Jeff
Community Member
5 months ago

That must have been a bumpy ride back then!

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#18

Early Los Angeles Compared To 2001

Early Los Angeles Compared To 2001

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Bill Davies
Community Member
5 months ago

Barely conceivable that this is the same place.

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#19

The Former Island Of Urk - The Netherlands 1930 vs. 2020

The Former Island Of Urk - The Netherlands 1930 vs. 2020

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Jeff
Community Member
5 months ago

Former island????

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#20

From Fascism To Kebabs, Durham 1934 vs. 2020

From Fascism To Kebabs, Durham 1934 vs. 2020

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Caged Beer
Community Member
5 months ago

A positive change I think!

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#21

Buckhurst Hill Station (London Underground Station) - (1875 - 2020)

Buckhurst Hill Station (London Underground Station) - (1875 - 2020)

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sbj
Community Member
5 months ago

Nice!

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#22

University Of Montana ~150 Years Apart

University Of Montana ~150 Years Apart

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Tiny Dynamine
Community Member
5 months ago

Taking away the native people's land. :(

Oskar vanZandt
Community Member
5 months ago (edited)

Europeans trading useless goods for land and outright appropriation of native land: "After the United States became independent, it enacted legislation to regulate trading with the Indians/Native Americans, under the Trade and Intercourse Act, first passed on July 22, 1790. ... The Indian Removal Act of 1830 forced tribes such as the Cherokee and the Choctaw to move out of their homelands." [I think the "intercourse" part of the act's name is apt as the natives were mostly buggered!]

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LaDonna Hulcy
Community Member
5 months ago

Sad

sabocat
Community Member
5 months ago

150 years... and a genocide :****

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
5 months ago

Built at the bottom of what was a huge glacial lake, that's why there are striations on the hillside: the lapping of waters. The Missoula flood rushed to the see 30-50 or more times over several thousand years. This is an area of fascinating geology.

Boel Schenlaer
Community Member
5 months ago

Great knowledge, thanx for sharing.

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Pat Dunham
Community Member
5 months ago

Where did the native Americans go?

Mme de Poppadom
Community Member
5 months ago

Probably down to the quad, then after some Frolf, to their next class.

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Norart norart
Community Member
5 months ago

I'd like to know of an example of any cilvilization that came into being on virgin ground previously untouched by humans? Every European country participated in the slave trade. Slavic countries? 'slav' means slave. You are all suspiciously critical of the US while not willing to look at the rest of the worlds reality of displacement, oppression and slavery, historically and to this very day.

Boel Schenlaer
Community Member
5 months ago

Yes, we are willing to See all slavery!

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Mumof1
Community Member
5 months ago

And what happened to the indigenous people? Killed or put into a reservation no doubt. What the hell is that monstrous statue?

linny61
Community Member
5 months ago

Wasn't really the University of Montana in the top picture now, was it?

Boel Schenlaer
Community Member
5 months ago

Of course it was!

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Lynn Morello
Community Member
5 months ago

Big Difference, It is a shame they dispossessed the Native American Indians of their lands.

Sasha Kuleshov
Community Member
5 months ago

And they still own money to the Native American (:

Jeannie Carle
Community Member
5 months ago

soooo sad :'(

Davio D
Community Member
5 months ago

Very sad

Nisha DeAnda
Community Member
5 months ago

I’m In Missoula too. Love these shots

mikie stasso
Community Member
5 months ago

Im on the Reservation 15 miles north of the zoo. Mixed feelings

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Kittie Lacker
Community Member
5 months ago

Wow. That is CRAZY dude.

Tyna Harrison
Community Member
4 months ago

Wow

Lisa Holman
Community Member
5 months ago

And this kiddies, is called "improvement." (heavy sarcasm)

Tricia Flynn
Community Member
5 months ago

stolen land

Toea Muresan Iulia
Community Member
5 months ago

doesn't seem the same place

Jo Ellen Washburn
Community Member
5 months ago

Not cool. Nothing to "like."

Kristine Phillips
Community Member
5 months ago

land looks so stark behind building, should be trees there and a waterfall.

Shelli Aderman
Community Member
5 months ago

😰

Joe Goodman
Community Member
5 months ago

Vast improvement! Especially the bear statue reminds you of the awesomeness of nature.

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#23

Dubai Marina (2000 - 2020)

Dubai Marina (2000 - 2020)

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wandile dludlu
Community Member
5 months ago

Dubai had a plan from the beginning of this revolution

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See Also on Bored Panda
#24

The Trams They Are Changing ( 1990 / 2018 )

The Trams They Are Changing ( 1990 / 2018 )

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Mark Wilson
Community Member
5 months ago

Berlin, by the way

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#25

1820 Industrial St, Los Angeles

1820 Industrial St, Los Angeles

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NMN
Community Member
5 months ago (edited)

So... that pic is not from 1820... nor the building in the back. More like some decades ago maybe?

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#26

I Just Made This To Show Just How Much Melbourne's Skyline Has Grown In 20 Years...

I Just Made This To Show Just How Much Melbourne's Skyline Has Grown In 20 Years...

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True Blue
Community Member
5 months ago

We are going to big to fast but I still love Melbourne

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#27

Dresden In Ww2 vs. Dresden Now

Dresden In Ww2 vs. Dresden Now

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Nadine
Community Member
5 months ago

How can humans do that to one another

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#28

The Development Of This City In Georgia

The Development Of This City In Georgia

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Scagsy
Community Member
5 months ago

Bottom one looks like a motherboard

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#29

Hollywood Sign, Los Angeles, USA

Hollywood Sign, Los Angeles, USA

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CrunChewy McSandybutt
Community Member
5 months ago

Hollywoo

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#30

Subang Jaya, Selangor. 44 Years Apart

Subang Jaya, Selangor. 44 Years Apart

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Priya
Community Member
5 months ago

It's that the Empire!?

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Note: this post originally had 45 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.