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Writing the Date

There are several different ways to write the date in English. They vary from formal to informal, and there are differences between British and American English. The following table shows some typical formats.

Format British: Day-Month-Year American: Month-Day-Year
A the Fourteenth of March, 2011 March the Fourteenth, 2011
B 14th March 2011 March 14th, 2011
C 14 March 2011 March 14, 2011
D 14/3/2011 3/14/2011
E 14/3/11 3/14/11
F 14/03/11 03/14/11

Note: which format to use is a question of formality, politeness and personal choice. Generally, the longer formats, such as B or C, are more polite (since they show more respect for the reader). Shorter formats, such as D or E, are used in less formal situations, for example a memo, a letter between friends or an impersonal business letter. Format F is rather official and is typically seen on an invoice or an official or technical document. Format A is extremely formal and mainly used on printed items, for example a wedding invitation. The numerical formats may use a full stop (.) or hyphen (-) instead of a slash (/), for example: 14.3.2011 or 03-14-11

Note that another format exists which writes the date numerically in the order Year-Month-Day, for example: 2011/03/14. This is rare in British or American English and used mainly in very official or technical documents.
Months
Number Name Abbreviations
1 January Jan J
2 February Feb F
3 March Mar M
4 April Apr A
5 May May M
6 June Jun J
7 July Jul J
8 August Aug A
9 September Sep S
10 October Oct O
11 November Nov N
12 December Dec D
In English, months are correctly written with an initial capital: January, February...
Days of the Month
1st first
2nd second
3rd third
4th fourth
5th fifth
6th sixth
7th seventh
8th eighth
9th ninth
10th tenth
11th eleventh
12th twelfth
13th thirteenth
14th fourteenth
15th fifteenth
16th sixteenth
17th seventeenth
18th eighteenth
19th nineteenth
20th twentieth
21st twenty-first
22nd twenty-second
23rd twenty-third
24th twenty-fourth
25th twenty-fifth
26th twenty-sixth
27th twenty-seventh
28th twenty-eighth
29th twenty-ninth
30th thirtieth
31st thirty-first

See AD and BC

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