# Roman Numerals

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## Roman Numerals

the numerals of the ancient Romans. The Roman numeral system makes use of special symbols for powers of the base ten; for example, I = 1, × = 10, C = 100, and M = 1,000. Symbols also exist for halves of certain decimal powers: V = 5, L = 50, and D = 500. The natural numbers are written by means of the repetition of these numerals. If a larger numeral stands before a smaller one, the additive principle applies—that is, the numbers represented by the two numerals are added together. If a smaller numeral precedes a larger one, the subtractive principle applies—the smaller number is subtracted from the larger. The subtractive principle is made use of only to avoid repeating the same numeral four times. For example, I, X, and C are placed before X, C, and M, respectively, to signify 9, 90, and 900; when I, X, and C stand before V, L, and D, respectively, the numbers symbolized are 4, 40, and 400. Some examples of the expression of numbers in this system follow: VI = 5 + 1 = 6, IV = 5 – 1 = 4 (instead of IIII), XIX = 10 + 10 – 1 = 19 (instead of XVIIII), XL = 50 – 10 = 40 (instead of XXXX), and XXXIII = 10 + 10 + 10 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 33.

The Roman numeral system is very inconvenient for arithmetic operations with multidigit numbers. It is used today only in a few special cases. For example, it is occasionally used to designate centuries (the XVth century is the 15th century), years of the Common Era (MCMLXXV is the year 1975), months in dates (the Russian expression 1.V.1975 means May 1, 1975), ordinal numbers, and derivatives whose order is low but greater than three (such as in yIV and y v).

References in periodicals archive ?
6]b (for Roman numerals b = first inversion, c = second inversion, and d = third inversion).
I think all football players should (wear) Roman numerals," Nicols said.
Subjects in the forewarned memory task condition, however, knew that they would have to try to commit to memory many details of the clock, including the correct time, the maker's name and the place of manufacture (both written on the face), the shape of the hands, the orientation of the numbers, and so on, in addition to the actual Roman numerals.
But officials have ruled out the move ( although they say he would be free to call himself G ATE or use Roman numerals as in G VIII.
Dinner plate-size sundials in verdigris finish sport Roman numerals and fancy filagree reminiscent of European and American sundials from the 17th through the 19th centuries.
The hours are marked by Roman numerals with an outer minute track.
The "Desperate Housewives" actress currently sports a "Nine" on the back of her neck - Parker's Spurs singlet number - as well as the date she wed the basketball star, tattooed on her wrist in roman numerals.
Sir Jeremy Morse replies to the May Kickshaw item regarding consecutive Roman numerals in surnames: "I find no other names with 5 different Roman numerals, but there are 5 making a Roman number in the quartet McClinchy, McClinstock, McClintock, McClinton (MCCLI = 1251) and, if IC is allowed for 99, in McDicken (MCDIC = 1499).
It's also Roman numerals for 30, the festive birthday outing we're enjoying.
This rustic-style oval metal wall clock with heavily-distressed shabby-chic finish, features a vintage-style clockface with roman numerals and elegant black hands.
What number uses all seven Roman numerals in descending order?
The new numbers had a symbol that Roman numerals lacked, which was called by the Arabs {sudot}ifr, literally "empty.

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