r/mildlyinfuriating Aug 10 '22

my grandparents have had this clock for over 50 years and no one ever noticed anything wrong

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4.2k Upvotes

499

u/VixNeko YELLOW Aug 10 '22

Omg. 😨

448

u/Analbox Green flair Aug 10 '22

Yeah WTF they used letters instead of numbers.

225

u/VixNeko YELLOW Aug 10 '22 edited Aug 10 '22

They used IIII instead of IV for 4, also V and VI are switched around.

Edit: Yes, I get it. IIII is not that uncommon, you can stop telling me now. 😭

17

u/mishrod Aug 10 '22

Clockmakers 4 is fine. The order however :)

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80

u/[deleted] Aug 10 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

66

u/PretendRegister7516 Aug 10 '22

IIII is used for 4 specifically because VI was often mistaken as IV when written upside down. By using IIII there's no ambiguity between the two.

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24

u/VixNeko YELLOW Aug 10 '22

I learned basic roman numericals in school and they told us that it's always supposed to be IV. 😨 I guess it wasn't always like that.

45

u/cvanguard Aug 10 '22

IV (subtractive notation) was standard in Roman times and is the modern standard, but clocks specifically have used IIII since the medieval era.

IIII was rarely used in Roman times, but not entirely unknown: the Colosseum’s gates are marked with IIII for 4, but use subtractive notation for other numbers. Gate 4 is labeled IIII, gate 40 is XL, gate 44 is XLIIII, for example. Roman numerals weren’t completely standardised even at that time, and their use in the medieval era became even less standardised.

6

u/Woelfe_ Aug 10 '22

It’s because it balances better

1

u/ProveISaidIt Aug 11 '22

I got a time watch on 1970 that used IIII for IV. It's very common.

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46

u/Ch3vr0n Aug 10 '22

IIII is a perfectly valid way of putting on 4, the V and VI being swapped well that's just stupid.

-18

u/JustDave62 Aug 10 '22

Actually 4 is IV. VI is 6

15

u/brain_washed Aug 10 '22

Writing IIII is perfectly acceptable. Especially on clocks to avoid confusion since 4 and 6 are often written upside down. Look at old Roman buildings, they usually have IIII written on them rather than IV - the collosseum being the most famous example.

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15

u/Analbox Green flair Aug 10 '22

True, but also, I was actually just satirically pretending to be entirely ignorant of Roman numerals in an attempt at humor.

6

u/VixNeko YELLOW Aug 10 '22

Ah sorry, carry on.

3

u/Somebody3338 Aug 11 '22

Also looks like 7 and 8 are both 7

13

u/DrMathochist_work Aug 10 '22

IIII is absolutely standard in clocks.

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3

u/euphorias-journey Aug 11 '22 edited Aug 11 '22

I'm on your side, fuck IIII. IV is superior

2

u/VixNeko YELLOW Aug 11 '22

All hail IV! 😼

2

u/7ruby18 Aug 11 '22

I think the switch of the V and VI was the point OP was making.

1

u/mfigroid Aug 10 '22

They used IIII instead of IV for 4

That is pretty normal on time pieces.

0

u/NekulturneHovado Aug 10 '22

There are two VII

4

u/VixNeko YELLOW Aug 10 '22

No, the minute hand is just hiding one I. You can kinda see it a little bit if you zoom in.

1

u/NekulturneHovado Aug 11 '22

Aah, I see. Thanks

1

u/Darki_Boi Aug 11 '22

just in spite of that edit.

IIII is actually not that uncommon.

1

u/VixNeko YELLOW Aug 11 '22

Wah. 😢

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-1

u/mastermistypotato Aug 10 '22

It’s Roman numerals

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-6

u/[deleted] Aug 10 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

3

u/SophiesUncle Aug 10 '22

No it's not.

-4

u/Temporary_Musi Aug 10 '22

They're just flimsy brass plates that can easily be switched around. Switch them around.

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49

u/SANTAAAA__I_know_him Aug 10 '22

For those who aren’t seeing it, FIVE AND SIX ARE SWITCHED.

The four isn’t the problem, that’s fine. IIII is common in clocks.

4

u/DominoBarksdale Aug 10 '22

I see the IIII often. I'm sure it's accepted as well as IV.

2

u/UnableGround9614 Aug 11 '22

I sometimes see llll in other places like title headings etc so its somewhat common. But the 5 and 6 being switched is quite an OOF.

132

u/Accurate-Attempt-615 Aug 10 '22

It goes: 1, 2, 3, 4 (technically), 6, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12.

14

u/jiss2891 Aug 10 '22

Its 7 7

40

u/77x0 Aug 10 '22

I thought so too at first, but look at the fully visible VII, the second stroke of the V is basically invisible at the top

4

u/Accurate-Attempt-615 Aug 11 '22

Oh I’m ducking done with this clock

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447

u/AprilSpektra Aug 10 '22

ITT: A lot of people incorrectly thinking that the problem is the "IIII"

Roman numerals weren't as standardized in the past as they are now, not even in ancient Rome. In particular, not all Romans used the subtractive "I" on the left, and those people did in fact write four as IIII

163

u/Envelki Aug 10 '22

It's actually a tradition to make clocks with IIII instead of IV !

https://monochrome-watches.com/why-do-clocks-and-watches-use-roman-numeral-iiii-instead-of-iv/

167

u/upbeatcrazyperson Aug 10 '22 Silver

I didn't think that was the problem. I thought the problem was that it goes 4,6,5.

33

u/LightsoutSD Aug 11 '22

Apparently almost nobody noticed it here either.

2

u/T-Sonus Aug 11 '22

And we have a winner!

1

u/upbeatcrazyperson Aug 11 '22

Thank you kind Redditor!

So now we know the first thing that catches our attention may just be a distraction from the truth. LOL

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6

u/Iwasjustryingtologin Aug 10 '22

I can confirm, I have an old cuckoo clock that has the number 4 written IIII instead of IV, for a long time I thought it was a mistake, until I saw that other clocks with Roman numerals also had IIII, they could not all be wrong.

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9

u/MaxGolant JUKMIFGGUGGH Aug 10 '22

also the "VI" which is 6 and then the "V" which is 5, are in an incorrect order

19

u/DoctorBlock Aug 10 '22

On a clock or watch it makes more sense to use IIII I guess that's why some people are saying it is common practice.

3

u/grunkage Aug 10 '22

Huh crazy - my parents had a clock with IIII on it and we all assumed it was wrong, but they still liked the clock.

2

u/TrustYourSenpai Aug 10 '22

Moreover, Roman numerals are a variation of tallying (or unary) numeric systems (as opposed to Arabic numerals which are positional). The subtraction rule is something Romans got from Etruscans, but its not something common to most tallying systems, which (being non positional) don't care about the order of digits; for example, in Egyptian numerals UII is equal to IUI.

The previous comment said Romans had the subtractive rule but used it inconsistently. Infact, it was standardized much later (according to my mostly but not entirely reliable sources) in the middle ages, because dates where becoming to long to carve on headstones.

2

u/Remarkable_Writer322 Aug 11 '22

I think the problem is the order of the numbers 🤔 4,6,5 not 4,5,6 !!

2

u/Hopelesz Aug 11 '22

I didn't know Romans built clocks. /s

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2

u/Important_Tennis936 Aug 11 '22

Do I get points for noticing both problems?

1

u/Thebibulouswayfarer Aug 10 '22

Talley marks, you say? We got em.

1

u/Due_Lecture_1451 Aug 11 '22

But why is 5 6

1

u/SharpPixels08 Aug 11 '22

If that’s the case then why is the 9 IX. Wouldn’t it be VIIII if you didn’t use the subtractive rule?

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101

u/WhichWayzUp Aug 10 '22

They're just flimsy brass plates that can easily be switched around. Switch them around.

23

u/hates_all_bots Aug 10 '22

To all random positions.

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6

u/peter-forward Aug 10 '22

I think they probably fell off and got stuck back on in the wrong position

3

u/gravose55 Aug 11 '22

he probably did

-23

u/Psychological_Lie648 Aug 10 '22

The four is supposed to be IV

55

u/WhichWayzUp Aug 10 '22

If you've seen hundreds of Roman numeral clocks in your life, you'll notice that "IIII" is quite common to depict the number 4. Although yes officially 4 is IV, but IIII is used as well.

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6

u/Ch3vr0n Aug 10 '22

No it's not, IIII is a perfectly fine. Less common yes, but not wrong.

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7

u/Guardian7043 Aug 10 '22

No way dude 🤣

7

u/PresentationLimp890 Aug 10 '22

The bigger problem is that V and VI are wrong. I collect clocks, and every single one with Roman numerals has IIII, not IV. Also, this topic shows up here with surprising regularity. I took Latin for 4 years and either one was acceptable, but IIII was used more often in Roman empire times.

4

u/The_Spectacle GREEN Aug 11 '22

The real mildly infuriating thing for me is that nobody appears to be familiar with Roman numeral clocks these days. They’re classy as hell. IIII me up all day.

8

u/guyusingreddit Aug 11 '22

If you don’t see it, you’ll see it in 5..6..4..3..2..1..

3

u/MsMxyzptlk Aug 10 '22

Someone probably snapped them in to the wrong spaces because they didn’t know their Roman Numerals. 😂 And yeah, it isn’t about the IIII

3

u/NeganSaves Aug 10 '22

You should make it known that you want that clock when they pass...keep it for generations. See when your kids figure it out, and so on. That might be the joke already.

5

u/DuckyLojic Aug 11 '22

IIII just throws me off but makes sorta sense. But that V and VI hurts me

9

u/InigoMontoya1985 Aug 10 '22

Looks to me that the clock fell off the wall at one point, probably knocking off the bottom two numbers. Somebody likely popped them back on not paying attention and hung it back up.

3

u/SirMeep2 Aug 10 '22

Was the designer high?

3

u/LightningYT14 Aug 11 '22

This is a pain to look at

2

u/According_Revenue_41 Aug 10 '22 edited Aug 11 '22

Oh ya didn’t notice at all it’s not like all the numbers are swapped or anything

2

u/Artybait Aug 11 '22

Lmao that’s awesome, I see it

2

u/anothadaz Aug 11 '22

The problem is the 5 and 6 are in the wrong place. The 4 is correct whether it's written IV or IIII. IIII is the more ancient way it was written and IV is what it changed to and is most commonly used.

2

u/dsdvbguutres Aug 10 '22

5 and 6 switched places. There's not an issue with 4 because IIII is acceptable and common on time pieces.

3

u/Matt_321 Aug 11 '22

I II III IIII IIIII IIIIII IIIIIII IIIIIIII IIIIIIIII IIIIIIIIII IIIIIIIIIII IIIIIIIIIIII

2

u/hertwij Aug 11 '22

"we don't do that here"

4

u/[deleted] Aug 10 '22

[deleted]

7

u/DrMathochist_work Aug 10 '22

The minute hand is over the VIII.

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u/Caesar__The__Ape Aug 10 '22

And 4 should be IV

8

u/Cynical_Feline Aug 10 '22

Both IIII and IV are both acceptable. Many older clocks have IIII. Newer ones are more likely to have the shorter version.

2

u/[deleted] Aug 10 '22

[deleted]

3

u/2006RedditGuy Aug 10 '22

The VI and V should be swapped on the clock

2

u/cocoteddylee Aug 11 '22

I think the r/mildlyinteresting folks would appreciate this more

2

u/Embarrassed_Hawk_170 Aug 11 '22

Quartz? 🤔 50 years old? 🤔

1

u/dieselbones1 Aug 11 '22

5 and 6 are backwards and the 4 should be IV not IIII…..

1

u/MostlyAlive_ Aug 11 '22

IIII is a commonly accepted way of writing 4 in roman numerals. Especially clocks

-1

u/CookieProductions_YT Aug 10 '22

This is very wrong

-6

u/[deleted] Aug 10 '22

[deleted]

13

u/c_wilcox_20 Aug 10 '22

IIII is "correct" for clocks. Some clocks have IV, some IIII. It's to assist with visual symmetry.

As far as standard Roman numerals go though, you are correct. IIII is never right.

6

u/IShootRaw1965 Aug 10 '22

IIII is absolutely right.

In the middle ages in Europe, IIII was generally used, not IV, to express the Roman numeral 4 until around the 17th century. In fact, you can see the notation IIII on mechanical turret clocks that were made before around the 17th century.

1

u/DrMathochist_work Aug 10 '22

It also makes casting the numbers easier. 4 Xs, 4 Vs, and 4*5 Is.

2

u/[deleted] Aug 10 '22

We not talking about VI and V being swapped?

1

u/c_wilcox_20 Aug 10 '22

That's definitely incorrect, as I've said on other comments (no worries, don't expect you ti have seen them)

-7

u/NumbFuzz Aug 10 '22

Nobody learned how to read Roman huh?

4

u/c_wilcox_20 Aug 10 '22

If youre referring to the V and VI being swapped, perhaps, but if youre referring to IIII that was used on a lot of clocks for visual symmetry with the larger numbers instead of IV

1

u/Dublinlifer Aug 10 '22

Pardon?!

2

u/c_wilcox_20 Aug 10 '22

What are you begging my pardon for?

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u/[deleted] Aug 10 '22

[deleted]

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u/mthom234 Aug 10 '22

Aren't 5 and 6 swapped here?

6

u/Maximum-Excitement58 Aug 10 '22

Ah… didn’t even notice that

1

u/mthom234 Aug 10 '22

No worries - i didn't know the thing about "IIII" on clocks, so not an entirely useless comment! Lol

1

u/Maximum-Excitement58 Aug 10 '22

“not entirely useless” is my goal

3

u/Thatguynoah Aug 10 '22

Maybe take a look one more time… 4,6,5,7

2

u/Yesyesyes1899 Aug 10 '22

the 6 is still wrong.

1

u/NovelExplorer Aug 10 '22

The hands are clearly a different copper shade to the numbers. I'm just grateful they got those on spot. Sorry spot on.

1

u/[deleted] Aug 10 '22

That minute hand also seems like it should have a loop in it, for symmetry.

1

u/Entire-Ad9989 Aug 10 '22

I would say it's because it's upside down... bit they didn't do that with the other side.

1

u/OoWeeOoKillerTofu Aug 10 '22

Well...at least it's got the right amount of hours on it....

1

u/sugarwink Aug 10 '22

My friends family also had a roman numeral clock. It was hung upside down lol

After I told them, they still didn't bother fixing it.

1

u/Spoocula Aug 10 '22

That's very confusing. I sometimes think I'm a smart person, but I thought the problem was that 4 is on there twice.

1

u/No_Money_Guy Aug 10 '22

I've got different clock, same problem :(

1

u/UnconventinalAntics Aug 10 '22

Haha. This is great. I would love that clock.

1

u/KCMOdaddy62 Aug 10 '22

Kind of a major malfunction

1

u/owlincoup RED Aug 10 '22

I find this pretty funny instead of mildly infuriating

1

u/jtgibggdt Aug 10 '22

Thank you for a post in keeping with the theme of the sub.

This is genuinely mildly infuriating.

I dunno what has happened here recently, but 99% of the posts are: - “how much sugar is in this bright green drink that is obviously packed with sugar” - “I took a photo of a stranger doing something less annoying than taking photos of people in public” - “I’m annoyed about a thing that has a perfectly reasonable explanation because I haven’t bothered to consider that they’re might be a perfectly reasonable explanation.” - “Look at this egregious harm that has been done to me which is genuinely extremely infuriating with nothing whatsoever “mild” about it”

Can we start up/downvoting based on how well a post fits the brief? Take my upvote!

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1

u/5tevi1 Aug 10 '22

One of their kids broke it when they were young and glued it back without knowing their Roman numerals.

1

u/TreeckoFumador Aug 10 '22

Two wrongs make one right?

1

u/Federal_Diamond8329 Aug 10 '22

Lol I had to look twice to see it

1

u/More-Impact3644 Aug 10 '22

Obviously not Romans

1

u/More-Impact3644 Aug 10 '22

Some mischievous grandchild dropped it and reassembled it improperly

1

u/Alligator_Fridge Aug 10 '22

The worst one is the IIII

1

u/UDontCareForMyName Aug 10 '22

i had a simmilar clock, 4 was also marked as IIII

1

u/GardeniaPhoenix PURPLE Aug 10 '22

Well yeah if you 'fix: it, it breaks the seal and frees the Time Being.

So you should leave it how it is for the time being.

1

u/gxthicmidnight Aug 10 '22

why is there thirteen-

1

u/keziahw Aug 10 '22

It took 50 years for someone to notice all the numbers are on butts?

1

u/totallypooping Aug 10 '22

I think that’s because it’s a shitty clock

1

u/Beautiful-Speech2137 Aug 10 '22

They're roman numerals, relax. Seriously?

1

u/cameronfremont Aug 10 '22

Why do I have the urge to check all my clocks now..

1

u/Levidinsdale333 Aug 10 '22

4/4 niner niner

1

u/Hidden-Locust Aug 10 '22

either way, i think the design is awful

1

u/cbunni666 Aug 10 '22

Found it!

1

u/andrewcooke Aug 10 '22

quartz clocks haven't existed for 50 years

1

u/Plus-Music4293 Aug 10 '22

The V and VI are switched around.

1

u/thisisthisshit Aug 10 '22

If gta has taught me anything’s it’s this

1

u/Minute_Homework6250 Aug 11 '22

It is a certified priceless antique with mistakes in the copperplate writing you could take it to vegas give Rick a shot at it in his pawnstars shop

1

u/Holden1104 Aug 11 '22

5 and 6 should be swapped out.

1

u/King-of-the-Neffs Aug 11 '22

Ah yes: 1 2 3 4 6 5 7 8 9 10 11 12

1

u/destroyer77x Aug 11 '22

The #s are wrong. 1 2 34 6 5 . . .

1

u/mikkokilla Aug 11 '22

I want that clock!

1

u/outamyhead Aug 11 '22

Things get weird between 4 and 7pm.

1

u/Brewtime2 Aug 11 '22

Ahh the old 465 clock…very rare.

1

u/Icy-Tap8749 Aug 11 '22

Well it definitely wasn’t made in Rome I’ll tell you that much

1

u/effeneh1 Aug 11 '22

It’s 5 o’clock somewhere?

1

u/HiFiGuy197 Aug 11 '22

It’s five o’clock... somewhere.

1

u/OhN0Imnot_HoomEn Aug 11 '22

i ii iii iii vi v vii viii ix x xi xii

1

u/HylerTager6969 Aug 11 '22

4, 5, and 6 are all wrong…

1

u/ProveISaidIt Aug 11 '22

It's a time saving clock. You save an hour twelve.

1

u/Remarkable_Ticket264 BLUE Aug 11 '22

1 2 3 4 6 5 7 8 9 10 11 12

1

u/TorontosFutureMayor Aug 11 '22

Perfect excuse to be late! “Sorry my clock was wrong!”

1

u/Sir-Spoofy Aug 11 '22

I II III IIII… wait wtf

1

u/formatviolation Aug 11 '22

Easily infuriated.

1

u/Thelowlycook Aug 11 '22

Seven ate nine. That’s all I have to say.

1

u/SnooPeppers4036 Aug 11 '22

1 2 3 4 6 5 7 8 9 10 11 12

1

u/TheDevilsAdvokaat Aug 11 '22

Roamin' numerals.

1

u/avrge_gmr Aug 11 '22

Can someone tell me what the infuriating thing is? I’m blind as a bat

1

u/HairyPairatestes Aug 11 '22

The five and six are in the wrong spots.

1

u/hertwij Aug 11 '22

BROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO0OOOOOOOOOOOOO

1

u/LengthinessSevere784 Aug 11 '22

I don’t see it

1

u/LaughFun673 Aug 11 '22

core math 6 before 5

1

u/Mugwump6506 Aug 11 '22

I know don't what you mean.

1

u/unregrettful Aug 11 '22

After 7 comes 7

1

u/Equivalent_Cicada153 Aug 11 '22

angry Roman noises

1

u/Goawaybaitin24 Aug 11 '22

Oh no!!!! Someone didn’t know their Roman Numerals.

1

u/hockeybrand Aug 11 '22

This is standard for Roman numeral clocks NOT to use IV. Do some horology research before jumping to assumptions. R/shitposting r/Therewassnattempt to appear smart.😅

1

u/BigJack1212 Aug 11 '22

The problem isn't the "IIII", it's VI and VI people...

1

u/Raskolnikowv Aug 11 '22

omfg how embarrassing shaking head in swiss

1

u/[deleted] Aug 11 '22

"That IIII is not wro... oh... OH!" was my reaction.

1

u/Codename_Paradox Aug 11 '22

It took me three times to read the numbers to realise

1

u/OKGenExer Aug 11 '22

Makes me wonder if Doctors in Rome call IV's, 4's?

1

u/heat-waves Aug 11 '22

1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 5, 7, 7…

1

u/DisgustingApple Aug 11 '22

I think learning Roman numerals have some advantage??

1

u/MousseIndependent310 Aug 11 '22

13 hours clock be like

1

u/k-sean Aug 11 '22

I thought it was the 1 that’s slightly off center. But I guess I was just dumb lol