Telling the time in Latin

How to tell the time, and other time words and expressions, in Latin.

English Latin (Lingua Latina)
What time is it? Quota hōra est?
It's one o'clock (Hōra) prīma est
It's quarter past one È prīma cum quīdrante
It's half past one È prīma cum sēmisse
It's quarter to two (Hōra) prīma cum dōdrante
It's two o'clock (Hōra) secunda est
It's quarter past two (Hōra) secunda cum quīdrante
It's half past two (Hōra) secunda cum sēmisse
It's quarter to three (Hōra) secunda cum dōdrante
It's three o'clock (Hōra) tertia est
It's quarter past three (Hōra) tertia cum quīdrante
It's half past three (Hōra) tertia cum sēmisse
It's quarter to four (Hōra) tertia cum dōdrante
It's four o'clock (Hōra) quārta est
It's quarter past four (Hōra) quārtae un quarto
It's half past four (Hōra) quārtae cum sēmisse
It's quarter to five (Hōra) quārtae cum dōdrante
It's five o'clock (Hōra) quīnta est
It's quarter past five (Hōra) quīnta cum quīdrante
It's half past five (Hōra) quīnta cum sēmisse
It's quarter to six (Hōra) quīnta cum dōdrante
It's six o'clock (Hōra) sexta est
It's quarter past six (Hōra) sexta cum quīdrante
It's half past six (Hōra) sexta cum sēmisse
It's quarter to seven (Hōra) sexta cum dōdrante
It's seven o'clock (Hōra) septima est
It's quarter past seven (Hōra) septima cum quīdrante
It's half past seven (Hōra) septima cum sēmisse
It's quarter to eight (Hōra) septima cum dōdrante
It's eight o'clock (Hōra) octāva est
It's quarter past eight (Hōra) octāva cum quīdrante
It's half past eight (Hōra) octāva cum sēmisse
It's quarter to nine (Hōra) octāva cum dōdrante
It's nine o'clock (Hōra) nōna est
It's quarter past nine (Hōra) nōna cum quīdrante
It's half past nine (Hōra) nōna cum sēmisse
It's quarter to ten (Hōra) nōna cum dōdrante
It's ten o'clock (Hōra) decima est
It's quarter past ten (Hōra) decima cum quīdrante
It's half past ten (Hōra) decima cum sēmisse
It's quarter to eleven (Hōra) decima cum dōdrante
It's eleven o'clock (Hōra) undecima est
It's quarter past eleven (Hōra) undecima cum quīdrante
It's half past eleven (Hōra) undecima cum sēmisse
It's quarter to twelve (Hōra) undecima cum dōdrante
It's twelve o'clock (Hōra) duodecima est
It's quarter past twelve (Hōra) dodici cum quīdrante
It's half past twelve (Hōra) dodici cum sēmisse
It's quarter to one (Hōra) duodecima cum dōdrante
during the day dimidiata
at night vigiliae / noctis
midday / noon meridie
midnight media noctis (inclinatio)
hour hōra
minute minuta
second secunda

Days of the week

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
diēs lūnae diēs martis diēs mercurī diēs iovis diēs veneris diēs saturnī diēs solis

Months of the year

January February March April May June
Iānuārius Februārius Martius Aprīlis Māius Iūnius
July August September October November December
Iūlius Augustus September Octōber November December


Spring Summer Autumn Winter
ver aestas autumnus hiems


The Romans originally divided the day into two parts: ante meridiem (before noon) and post meridiem (after noon).

Sundials were used in the Roman world from about 263 BC, and the natural day (dies naturalis) ran from sunrise to sunset and was divided into twelve hours. The length of the hours varied depending on the time of year: from 45 minutes in winter to 75 mintues in summer in the Mediterranean.

The civil day (dies civilis) ran from midnight (media nox) to midnight. It was used when giving the date of birth of a child, and was divided into the following parts:

  1. Media nox (midnight)
  2. Mediae noctis inclinatio
  3. Gallicinium (cock crowing)
  4. Conticinium (cock stops crowing)
  5. Diluculum (dawn)
  6. Mane (morning)
  7. Antemeridianum tempus (forenoon)
  8. Meridies (mid-day)
  9. Tempus pomeridianum (afternoon)
  10. Solis occasus (sunset)
  11. Vespera (evening)
  12. Crepusculum (twilight)
  13. Prima fax (lighting of candles)
  14. Concubia nox (bed-time, "in the depth of night")
  15. Intempesta nox (far into the night "in the dead of night")
  16. Inclinatio ad mediam noctem

Days were grouped in eight-day cycles known as nundina, and each eighth day was a market day.

Hear some of these phrases:


Telling the time in Latin

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