11 in battleship Gneisenau, shortly after the 1939 reconstruction which gave her a raked bow (the original straight stem was found to be very 'wet' on trials) and a funnel cap: sister Scharnhorst was similarly modified, but in addition her mainmast was moved further aft, making the previously identical sisters easy to differentiate. Gneisenau was terminally damaged by RAF bombing in February 1942.
WWII German Battleships...Bismarck was the first of two Bismarck-class battleships built for the German Kriegsmarine. Named after Chancellor Otto von Bismarck, was completed in August 1940, when she was commissioned into the German fleet. Bismarck and her sister ship Tirpitz were the largest battleships ever built by Germany, and two of the largest built by any European power.
11 in battleship Scharnhorst photographed from sister Gneisenau during Operation Berlin, their commerce raiding cruise in the North Atlantic, February 1941 - many photos of both on this board. Initially very similar, after modifications during 1939 - 40 they were easy to tell apart as Scharnhorst's mainmast was shipped further aft.