Blogging from A to Z: X is for Decem

512px-BadSalzdetfurthBadenburgerStr060529
Clock with Roman numerals, Bad Salzdefurth, Germany. JuergenG / CC BY-SA (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)

I know, I know. You’re sitting there thinking “How does that even work? Decem starts with a d, not an x.” Well, I’ll tell you.

Today we’re going to have a little Latin lesson, with the numbers 1-10. Chart, below, via Transparent Language.

As you reach number seven, you may notice that the Latin looks kind of familiar. That’s because September, October, November, and December were months seven through 10 in the ancient Roman year. The Roman numeral for 10, X, is decem.

As an aside, I learned to tell time on a clock face with Roman numerals, which hung in our living room. That’s why I included a clock on this post.

1 I ūnus
2 II duo
3 III trēs
4 IV quattuor
5 V quīnque
6 VI sex
7 VII septem
8 VIII octō
9 IX novem
10 X decem

10 thoughts on “Blogging from A to Z: X is for Decem

    1. They had only a 10-month calendar and seemed to ignore what we now call January and February, just referring to those days as “winter.” The months were Martius, Aprilis, Maius, Junius, Quintilis, Sextilis, September, October, November, and December. Their formal year lasted 304 days.

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  1. Hello, I went to Catholic grammar school & one year of high in Catholic School, but it got expensive so public high school was Sophomore thru Senior. That’s were I learned some Latin and roman numerals. In Catholic school we went to church on every holy day of obligation and our prayer book aka Missal (not sure of the spelling – sorry), on one side of the page would be English and the other would be Latin because there were times the priest would say half the sentence and we would say the rest during school most of the time it was in Latin. Have a nice day and Stay Healthy, Stay Safe and most of all STAY HOME!

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    1. And the church said “Amen!” Our shelter-in-place where I live has been extended until May 31. While it is difficult to have no real separation between my day job and my author life, I’m grateful. I limit my trips out to once per week, and don’t dally!

      I’m glad you stopped by today.

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  2. My watch has Roman Numerals. I think it looks more interesting but it is a lot harder to fit them in. I just noticed the 4 is shown as a IIII and not IV. So I looked at my wall clock and it says IIII and then I looked at yours and it says IIII. So I googled it and came up with a multitude of theories why some clocks have IV and some have IIII. There are too many to summarise here.

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