I understand that when dates are written, the years are expressed in Roman numerals (e.g.: 2019 is written MMXIX), but it has been years since I heard the numbers actually pronounced.

How were the numbers of the years expressed verbally? Were they cardinal, ordinal, or otherwise? And with that in what case were they: nominative or ablative?

AD 2019 is pronounced anno domini... (what)?

1 Answer 1


The numbers are ordinals in the singular masculine ablative. They modify the word anno, having its form. In Latin you say literally "on the 2019th year", which is anno bis millesimo undevicesimo. You can of course add Domini or ante Christum natum or some such phrase if you want, but it is often clear enough in context — just like in English.

  • So 2000th is bis millesimo rather than something like duo millesimo? Could you please explain how that works? May 2, 2019 at 4:18
  • 1
    @MediaMatellaLucretiaFlores That's how Latin ordinals work. I recommend asking a separate question about that actually, so that the matter gets properly explored. The 2 in 2000 behaves differently with cardinals and ordinals, and this is not unique to Latin.
    – Joonas Ilmavirta
    May 2, 2019 at 4:24

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