"at one o'clock" / "at 1 oclock"

Discussion in 'English Only' started by usingenglish, Nov 25, 2010.

  1. usingenglish Senior Member

    Spain,spanish
    Hello.

    What is the correct form?

    - "at one (two, etc) o'clock"
    - "at 1 (2, 3, etc) oclock"

    I would be grateful for your help.
     
  2. entangledbank

    entangledbank Senior Member

    London
    English - South-East England
    The apostrophe must be used: o'clock, not oclock. Whether you use a word 'one' or a figure '1' is your choice. It's not very important, but books would normally use the word.
     
  3. natkretep

    natkretep Moderato con anima

    Singapore
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    Yes, the apostrophe there indicates that something has been elided (left out): o' clock is derived from of the clock. You also see this in will o' the wisp, jack o' lantern. You might notice that I put a space after the apostrophe - I am in the minority though.
     
  4. Lis48

    Lis48 Senior Member

    York, England
    English - British
    It is normally considered better English to write small numbers (up to ten) in full so I would always write one o´clock rather than 1 o´clock in any formal writing.
    When it comes to bigger numbers though e.g.11/12 o´clock, you would usually use the number.
     
  5. Parla Senior Member

    New York City
    English - US
    I agree about spelling out the single-digit numbers. In the US, we don't leave a space after the apostrophe.
     
  6. Lis48

    Lis48 Senior Member

    York, England
    English - British
    It would not be correct in the UK either.
     

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