ASL Lessons | Bookstore | Library | ASL University Main ►

"Military Time in ASL?"


An ASL Hero writes:
How do I sign military time - 2100 + hours?


You sign it by touching the base of a 9-handshape to the top of your non-dominant wrist and then moving the 9 handshape to the neutral fingerspelling location. Then you sign NIGHT.  (heh)
Let me change your question.  Suppose I asked you:  "What is 2100 hours in everyday civilian English?" 
You would answer: 9:00PM (or similar).
ASL doesn't use military time.  Just as standard American English doesn't use military time.
However, ASL has something just as cool as military time.  You can sign NIGHT while doing the number 11.   (Yes, the number ends up upside down but that doesn't matter to a skilled ASL signer).  Thus there is no doubt that you are talking about 11:00PM and not 11:00AM.
Midnight is literally signed as an upside-down 12 as the dominant hand in the NIGHT sign.
- Dr. Bill
p.s. If for some reason you really, really, really need to express the exact concept of 2100 hours -- I'd do so by providing context:
"ARMY-[military] TIME 21-HUNDRED HOUR"
(The 21-HUNDRED would be the normal sign for 21 snapped into a "C" handshape.) I might also do the QUOTE/UNQUOTE signs before and after the 21-HUNDRED HOUR to emphasize that I'm referring to specific type of phraseology.


Also see: "Deaf in the Military"


*  Want to help support ASL University?  It's easy
DONATE  (Thanks!)

Another way to help is to buy something from Dr. Bill's "Bookstore."

Want even more ASL resources?  Visit the "ASL Training Center!"  (Subscription Extension of ASLU)  

*  Also check out Dr. Bill's channel:

You can learn American Sign Language (ASL) online at American Sign Language University  
ASL resources by    Dr. William Vicars