Have you ever wondered what Europe looked like before or during the Second World War (WWII)? Take a look at our “before and after” or “then and now” images and see what the war did to the people, the monuments and the landscapes.

Head over to our site for an interactive version of each image and many, many more!

Let us know what you think about the images below in the comments

More info: re.photos

#1

Burning Peterhof

Burning Peterhof

Burning Peterhof Palace after the Nazi invasion. 1941 September. Before photo: Unknown author, after photo: Sergey Larenkov.

SergeyLarenkov Report

EHops 1 month ago

They did a wonderful job restoring the building

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#2

Avenue Foch (Occupation Of Paris)

Avenue Foch (Occupation Of Paris)

On June 14, 1940, troops of the German Wehrmacht occupy Paris. The picture shows the victory parade of the German 30th Infantry Division on the Avenue Foch in front of General Kurt von Briesen 1886-1941. Before photo: Deutsches Bundesarchiv, after photo: Nicolai Wolpert.

nwolpert Report

Martin Mcbride 1 month ago

Other than the welcome lack of Nazis it's exactly the same

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#3

Cinema In Żnin During German Occupation

Cinema In Żnin During German Occupation

Catholic house transformed by the Germans into a cinema. 1941. Before photo: Unknown author, after photo: Filip.

Filip Report

Marlene Ricker 4 weeks ago

It looks so much better without the Nazi flags!

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#4

Captured German Soldiers At Juno Beach

Captured German Soldiers At Juno Beach

Captured German Soldiers at Juno Beach shortly before their deportation to England. In the background, the villa "Denise et Roger" can be seen. It is one of the most famous places in the time of D-Day. 1994, June 6th. Before photo: Ken Bell, after photo: Lena.

Lena Report

Kjorn 1 month ago

the canadian beach

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#5

Place De La Concorde (Liberation Of Paris)

Place De La Concorde (Liberation Of Paris)

A crowd celebrates the arrival of Allied troops during a victory parade for the liberation of Paris, as suddenly shots from a sniper on one of the roofs are heard. Quickly the Parisians scatter for cover. Although the city was officially abandoned by the Germans, small bands of snipers remained active, which made the victory celebrations risky. 1944, August 29. Before photo: National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, after photo: Nicolai Wolpert.

nwolpert Report

Candace Fitzpatrick 1 month ago

Same old lampposts, amazing

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#6

Cherbourg-Octeville

Cherbourg-Octeville

The city center and US troops in June 1944. Several US vehicles are parked on the Quai de Caligny west of the rotary bridge. Before photo: Unknown author, after photo: Hegemonus.

Hegemonus Report

Candace Fitzpatrick 1 month ago

After over 70 years the wrought iron balcony still looks great

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#7

Aachen Rathaus

Aachen Rathaus

Southside of the Aachen Town Hall at Katschhof at the end of World War II. The town hall is one of the most important buildings in the historic center of Aachen. It was repeatedly rebuilt and expanded over many centuries. The oldest part of the monument is the Granusturm from the time of Charlemagne. During World War II, the town hall suffered badly from several bombing raids. On 14 July 1943, the roof and both City Hall towers burned out, the steel skeletons of the tower domes bent by the heat dominated the appearance of the town hall for a few years. Rebuilding followed in the 50s; last, the two-tower caps were finished in 1978. Before photo: Stadtarchiv Aachen / Stadtbildstelle, after photo: Nicolai Wolpert.

nwolpert Report

Uwe Theiss 1 month ago

Oh, I just visited it. My girlfriend is living in Aachen. Back when France and Germany where one country, Aachen was our capital!

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#8

German Prisoners At The Station In Bernières

German Prisoners At The Station In Bernières

Captured German soldiers await their transport at the railway station in Bernières-Sur-Mer. Today, the old station building serves as the tourist office. 1944. Before photo: Unknown author, after photo: Lena.

Lena Report

Farid Red 1 month ago

Tourist Office itself is tourist attraction

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#9

Notre-Dame (Liberation Of Paris)

Notre-Dame (Liberation Of Paris)

Priest 105mm self-propelled guns of the French 2nd Armoured Division in front of Notre Dame in Paris, 26 August 1944. Photo of the Imperial War Museum (IWM). Before photo: IWM (BU 127), after photo: Nicolai Wolpert.

nwolpert Report

Marlene Ricker 4 weeks ago

I vote for peace every time!

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#10

German Soldier In Alkmaar

German Soldier In Alkmaar

German soldier in Alkmaar at the Langestraat. 1941. Before photo: Unknown author, after photo: Regionaal Archief Alkmaar.

archiefalkmaar Report

LingonBelly 4 weeks ago

Say 'cheese' - a lovely little town

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#11

The Dam Busters

The Dam Busters

In May 1943, the Allies dropped specially developed "bouncing bombs" on select dams in Germany's industrial heartland. The Möhne dam was the hardest hit and 1600 civilians died in the flooding. The attack was dramatized by The Dam Busters (1955). Before photo: Schalber, after photo: jamesvdm.

jamesvdm Report

Jeff Requier 1 month ago

It was effective but also a war crime for killing so many Civillians in the process.

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#12

Rue St. Placide

Rue St. Placide

August 1944. Since 1940, Paris is occupied by German troops. As the Allied army approaches the capital, this encourages the Parisian population to resist. It comes to a general strike, followed by open revolts. Everywhere in the city (such as here in the rue St. Placide) barricades are erected, and around the 20th of August, the Resistance has taken control of the city. Although militarily inefficient, these barricades had a symbolic character for the Paris uprising. Before photo: Jean-Jacques Lebel, after photo: Nicolai Wolpert.

nwolpert Report

Candace Fitzpatrick 1 month ago

Reminds me of that scene from Les Miserables, Enjolras and the boys on the barricade

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#13

Villa Denise Et Roger At Juno Beach

Villa Denise Et Roger At Juno Beach

The villa "Denise et Roger" is one of the most famous places of the time of D-Day. The region around Bernières-Sur-Mer was liberated by Canadian soldiers on June 6. 1944. Before photo: Archives Nationales du Canada, after photo: Lena.

Lena Report

Troy Currie 4 weeks ago

I wonder if the strafing on the side of the building in the first photo was from aircraft fire. It looks like it came from the direction of the water.

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#14

Hoofdkwartier Wehrmacht

Hoofdkwartier Wehrmacht

German officers in the headquarters of the Wehrmacht in Huize Voorhout in Alkmaar. 1942. Before photo: Unknown author, after photo: Regionaal Archief Alkmaar

archiefalkmaar Report

#15

Locals Welcome The German Soldiers

Locals Welcome The German Soldiers

In the background is the Assumption Cathedral. 1941. Before and after photo: Lena.

Lena Report

Dave P 1 month ago

Well people forget that is some parts of Eastern Europe like Lithuania, Estonia, Ukraine, etc, the locals welcomed the Nazi's as liberators from Stalins rule, though within a few months most turned on the Nazi's (Outside of the Facists in those countries who joined the SS Auxilary and helped the occupation) when they realized the Nazi's were worse than Stalin.

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#16

San Lorenzo, Rome

San Lorenzo, Rome

San Lorenzo, Rome after the allied bombing on 19 July 1943. Before photo: LaRepubblica, after photo: GoogleMaps.

StuartSW6 Report

#17

Palais Chaillot

Palais Chaillot

Paris in September 1944, shortly after the recapture. To protect against potential German counterattacks, an anti-aircraft gun is provisionally installed by American soldiers in the park of the Palais de Chaillot. Before photo: anonym, Agence Gamma Rapho, after photo: Nicolai Wolpert.

nwolpert Report

Candace Fitzpatrick 1 month ago

That place looks so cold

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#18

Rentforter Straße

Rentforter Straße

Destroyed tram and houses in the Rentforterstrasse in Gladbeck, end of the Second World War. The house with the gabled facade in the background is the main entrance of the St. Barbara hospital. Today there are no more tramways in Gladbeck. 1945. Before photo: Vestische Straßenbahnen GmbH, after photo: Nicolai Wolpert.

Report

#19

Opéra Garnier (Occupation Of Paris)

Opéra Garnier (Occupation Of Paris)

The Opera Garnier decorated with swastikas for a festival of German music during the Occupation of Paris. The Germans organized a series of concerts in the occupied city, including by the Berlin Philharmonic, conducted by Herbert von Karajan. 1941. Before photo: Deutsches Bundesarchiv, after photo: Nicolai Wolpert.

nwolpert Report

Miranda Panda 1 month ago

Wow! What a beautiful building!! I'm glad it wasn't destroyed.

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#20

Pont Neuf/Quai De Conti (Liberation Of Paris)

Pont Neuf/Quai De Conti (Liberation Of Paris)

Barricade on the Pont Neuf at the intersection with the Quai de Conti, August 1944. Since 1940, Paris had been occupied by German troops. As the Allied army approached the capital, this encouraged the Parisian population to resist. It came to a general strike, followed by open revolts. Everywhere in the city barricades were erected, and around the 20th of August, the Resistance took control of the city. Although militarily inefficient, these barricades had a symbolic character for the Paris uprising. Before photo: Bibliothèque Nationale de France, after photo: Nicolai Wolpert.

nwolpert Report

Nadine Francis 4 weeks ago

It amazes me how the lampposts are still standing and used some 80 years later!

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#21

View From The Castle Of Caen On The Destroyed City

View From The Castle Of Caen On The Destroyed City

June 1944. Before photo: A. Grimm (Bundesarchiv), after photo: Lena.

Lena Report

Vaida Kuodytė 1 month ago

Ugh, and they built such absolute crap around it...

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#22

Siege Of Leningrad

Siege Of Leningrad

The school building destroyed by the Nazi bombing. 1941. Before photo: Unknown author, after photo: Sergey Larenkov.

SergeyLarenkov Report

Kjorn 1 month ago

not a place to be

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#23

The Battle Of Porta San Paolo, Rome

The Battle Of Porta San Paolo, Rome

On 10 September 1943, Porta San Paolo was the scene of the last attempt by the Italian army to avoid the German occupation of Rome On the evening of the 9th, the 21st Infantry Division "Granatieri di Sardegna" moved towards the center, engaging in fierce fighting on the Via Laurentina (Tre Fontane locality), around the Exposition Hill (current EUR district) and Forte Ostiense. The German troops marched on the Via Ostiense, towards the heart of Rome. Despite the overwhelming numerical superiority and armament of the enemy, the walls of Porta San Paolo became a defensive bulwark of resistance, protected by barricades and vehicle carcasses. The grenadiers also fought here with courage, along with the numerous civilians. Before photo: ComunediRoma, after photo: StuartSW6.

StuartSW6 Report

Gingergirl 1 month ago

Same tree

#24

San Lorenzo, Rome After The Bombing

San Lorenzo, Rome After The Bombing

San Lorenzo after the bombing in 1943, Princess Marie-José inspecting the damage. Before photo: Instituto Luce, after photo: GoogleMaps.

StuartSW6 Report

#25

Wehrmacht Soldiers In Schagen

Wehrmacht Soldiers In Schagen

Wehrmacht Soldiers In the city of Schagen in The Netherlands. 1940. Before photo: Foto Niestadt, after photo: Regionaal Archief Alkmaar.

archiefalkmaar Report

Gingergirl 1 month ago

Rooflines in 1940 are much nicer than now

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#26

Part Of Lodz City Center

Part Of Lodz City Center

Aerial shot of Lodz made at the end of WW2 (1942) compared with Google Earth's view from 2017. Before photo: Unknown author, after photo: Google Earth.

stefbra Report

Johannes Wykman 1 month ago

How is 1942 the end of WW2?

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#27

Old Bunker Alkmaar Flower Shop

Old Bunker Alkmaar Flower Shop

An old bunker is now used as a plant shop. Old Photo is taken in 1945, the new one in 2018. Before photo: Unknown author, after photo: Regionaal Archief Alkmaar.

archiefalkmaar Report

Spikey Bunny 1 month ago

The scaffolding suggests they are preparing to reconstruct the windmill. I hope that's true.

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#28

Battle Of Rome, Porta San Paolo

Battle Of Rome, Porta San Paolo

September 9th, 1943. Before photo: LaRepubblica, after photo: StuartSW6.

StuartSW6 Report

Gingergirl 1 month ago

Shame we can’t see through the trees to compare pictures

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#29

Horses Bring Food To Civilians Hidden In The Abbey

Horses Bring Food To Civilians Hidden In The Abbey

After parts of the city have been liberated by the Allies, horse carts bring food to those who took refuge in the Abbey of Saint-Étienne. 1944, July 10th. Before photo: National Archives Canada, after photo: Lena.

Lena Report

Karl Dupart 1 month ago

The "abbaye aux Hommes" (literally "men's abbey") in Caen ; the building on the left was part of the lycée Malherbe in 1944. It is now the town hall.

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#30

Alkmaar Mobilization Dutch Soldiers

Alkmaar Mobilization Dutch Soldiers

Mobilization Dutch soldiers before the "Ambachtsschool" in Alkmaar, The Netherlands. 1939. Before photo: Unknown author, after photo: Regionaal Archief Alkmaar.

archiefalkmaar Report

Note: this post originally had 39 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.