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
2 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
2 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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A Shipper
Community Member
2 months ago

That's so cool. I've never thought about it but, of course it would have been overgrown.

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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
2 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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LilicatUK
Community Member
2 months ago (edited)

A big improvement!

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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
2 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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Jeff
Community Member
2 months ago

Trees!!!

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#8

World War I Trenches

World War I Trenches

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Michelle Line
Community Member
2 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
2 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
2 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
2 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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LaDonna Hulcy
Community Member
2 months ago

I have this same picture! it's a beautiful spot.

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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
2 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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Michelle Line
Community Member
2 months ago

Love the blend of photos!

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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
2 months ago

This is amazing!

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#16

Singapore 2000 vs. Now

Singapore 2000 vs. Now

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Michelle Line
Community Member
2 months ago

I don't think there's anything from 2000 that's still there today.

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#17

1920 / 2020 . San Francisco, Ca

1920 / 2020 . San Francisco, Ca

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Maria Vasilieva
Community Member
2 months ago

I have a whole book "then and now" about SanFrancisco ... the city went through several fires, earthquakes, and boom of Silicon Valley and ... it still keeps a lot of Victorian charm mixed with hipster style graffiti. It's so different, I love SF

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#18

Early Los Angeles Compared To 2001

Early Los Angeles Compared To 2001

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Cip IESAN
Community Member
2 months ago

Find 5 differences between the two pictures.

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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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ProductofNZ
Community Member
2 months ago

History: A Dike was added in 1939 and later, land reclamation took place. No more Island of Urk.

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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
2 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
2 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
2 months ago

Taking away the native people's land. :(

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#23

Dubai Marina (2000 - 2020)

Dubai Marina (2000 - 2020)

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LaDonna Hulcy
Community Member
2 months ago

Sad

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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
2 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
2 months ago (edited)

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

Sean Harrison
Community Member
2 months ago

I think 1820 is the address.

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Jane Griffin
Community Member
2 months ago

1820 is the address !!!

Nicole Thompson
Community Member
2 months ago

This is the address, 1820. And the before pic was maybe 40 years ago.

Sarkis Vartanian
Community Member
2 months ago

its 1820 Industrial st. La Ca 90021. My old restaurant The Daily Dose... It was a very special place. We converted the old Alley to one of the coolest spots in LA. Daily-Dose...4e0b9f.jpg Daily-Dose-Door-5f601e34e0b9f.jpg

Jenny King
Community Member
2 months ago

1920 maybe

Toea Muresan Iulia
Community Member
2 months ago

This comment has been deleted.

Pippa Lee
Community Member
2 months ago

This is not a pic of 1820. The first tram ran around 1832 and looked a bit different. The world's first public railroad was inaugurated on September 27, 1825 with the ride of George Stephenson's “Locomotion No 1.

John Otruba
Community Member
2 months ago

the locomotive is most certainly 20th century not 19th ...the difference is dramatic without falsity!!

Mumof1
Community Member
2 months ago

Misleading headline - again.

Sczoo
Community Member
2 months ago

Look up that address on Google maps. Gritty and junk everywhere. Not sure what is going on with this post

M O'Connell
Community Member
2 months ago

Junk everywhere? You mean a handful of patio umbrellas? It's actually surprisingly clean. The photo is of the back side of 1820 Industrial, here's the view: https://www.google.com/maps/place/1820+Industrial+St,+Los+Angeles,+CA+90021/@34.0353719,-118.2344967,3a,53.6y,69.07h,88.03t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sM5K23o9iXt4KT5XMr9SKOw!2e0!7i16384!8i8192!4m5!3m4!1s0x80c2c623ebcff7bb:0xdc40f24240c3f3d7!8m2!3d34.0355987!4d-118.2337486

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Oskar vanZandt
Community Member
2 months ago

Really like this transformation...

Kittie Lacker
Community Member
2 months ago

Oh my gosh! This place has changed incredibly!

Michelle Line
Community Member
2 months ago

1820? I don't think so. That photo is in color - and it is not a colorized image. And I'm pretty sure they didn't have power lines like that in 1820.

Megzymonsta
Community Member
2 months ago

This comment is hidden. Click here to view.

Maybe they meant 1920. I don't think photography was even invented in 1820.

Malwin Wellham
Community Member
2 months ago

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Colored Photography in 1820

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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
2 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
2 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
2 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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Michelle Line
Community Member
2 months ago

According to Wiki: "In 1949, the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce began a contract with the City of Los Angeles Parks Department to repair and rebuild the sign. The contract stipulated that "LAND" be removed to spell "Hollywood" and reflect the district, not the "Hollywoodland" housing development."

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#30

Subang Jaya, Selangor. 44 Years Apart

Subang Jaya, Selangor. 44 Years Apart

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Jaded Queen
Community Member
2 months ago

the damage it does to nature in name of development. No body ever think about eco-friendly alternatives until it's too late. No problem if built fewer buildings and established greenery . It is such a wasted opportunity. There could be a large area of lush green . But noooo .Places like California and Australia have burned due to contribution by all over the world. And still only wildlife nd plantlife suffers largely. They have bleed the earth. Humans will pay with their burning and blood. Earth demends your head . Die disgusting selfish people . Suffer horribly

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