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It is correct to write four thirty for (4:30am/pm)? I do know that sometimes we will tell the time in that way but is it correct when it comes to writing? Or would it only be correct when we write "half past four"?

  • Writing time out (ie. four thirty), even in formal English, is very uncommon. You would just write 4:30. – Karlomanio Apr 11 '19 at 14:56
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Technically, four thirty is correct, as is 4:30, but 4:30 is generally used as it is quicker to type, takes less space and is quicker and easier to read.

However, there is a fundamental difference. Four thirty is words so it has a pronunciation and a syllable count etc. 4:30 is ideogrammatic. I can read it aloud however I choose:

Four thirty
Half past four
Halb fünf
Quatre heures et demie

So when the actual words are important, such as in reported speech (anywhere but especially in a witness statement) or in poetry (where rhyme and metre are important) and other similar situations, it may well be sensible to use the words.

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  • "In French, "Half past four" is "Quatre heures et demie" "Demie" : feminine noun that adds "e" to the masculine one. Sorry for the irrelevance. – Baiwir Apr 11 '19 at 21:41
  • Thank you, @Baiwir. My mistake. Corrected. As an English speaker, I assumed something joined to a noun phrase with and was itself a noun. – David Robinson Apr 11 '19 at 22:36
  • Thank you @DavidRobinson – Jaen39nc Apr 13 '19 at 3:50

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