Posted by: episystechpubs | June 11, 2012

Editor’s Corner: Time. See what’s become of me?

Good morning, folks. This may be a repeat to some, but since I have a lot of new subscribers, I’m going to review “time.” These are the rules according to the Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS), and the standards we use for Episys eDocs. I know some departments use the AP Stylebook, so before making big changes or going on a grammar attack, understand that these are guidelines. 🙂

Time of day

The following abbreviations are used in text and elsewhere. Though these sometimes appear in small capitals (with or without periods), Chicago prefers the lowercase form, with periods, as being the most immediately intelligible. [KC – Emphasis mine.]

  • a.m. – ante meridiem (before noon)
  • m. – meridies (noon [rarely used])
  • p.m. – post meridiem (after noon)

The abbreviations a.m. and p.m. should not be used with morning, afternoon, evening, night, or o’clock.

  • 10:30 a.m. or ten thirty in the morning
  • 11:00 p.m. or eleven o’clock at night

[KC – I am including this section because some of our system documentation includes settings and interfaces that
use the twenty-four-hour clock. This is not the formatting you’d normally see in newsletters or prose.]

The twenty-four-hour system

In the twenty-four-hour system of expressing time (used in Europe and in the military), four digits always appear, often with no punctuation between hours and minutes.

  • 1200 = noon
  • 2400 or 0000 = midnight
  • 0001 = 12:01 a.m.
  • 1438 = 2:38 p.m.
  • At 1500 hours (or 1500h) we started off on our mission.
  • General quarters sounded at 0415.

Kara Church | Senior Technical Editor

Symitar, A Jack Henry Company

8985 Balboa Ave. | San Diego, CA 92123


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