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What does AM and PM stand for?

So you ask yourself, what does AM and PM stand for? What are the acronyms for AM and PM? What do the initials a.m. and p.m. mean?

Both AM and PM come from Latin. AM stands for Ante Meridiem and PM stands for Post Meridiem. Furthermore, Ante Meridiem means before midday (before Noon), and Post Meridiem means after midday (after noon).

Although not the correct acronym, for easy remembering, you could say that AM stands for After Midnight and PM stands for Pre-Midnight or prior to midnight.

Other incorrect but useful way of remembering it is At Morning for AM and Post Morning for PM.

Also note that it is incorrect to say 12:00 AM or 12:00 PM because it is not technically before or after 12:00. You may be better off saying noon and midnight to be correct.

Depending on what style guide you use, there are many correct ways of shortening Ante Meridiem and Post Meridiem into acronyms or initials: AM and PM, A.M. P.M., am and pm, a.m. and p.m.

We like to be correct, so when someone asks us what time it is, we usually answer something like 5 Ante Meridiem or 9 Post Meridiem. Yeah, we are time geeks here at Research Maniacs!

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