In response to the “Paws Up, Paws Down” segment last week regarding the question as to why the design of the number four was on the clock tower, Today@Sam helps to clear up the misconception.
“According to the Verdin Company of Cincinnati, Ohio, manufacturer of the SHSU clock, the use of IIII was universally accepted when Roman numerals were used on dials.
Furthermore, a study of Roman inscriptions surviving from the days when Rome controlled the British Isles shows that the Romans themselves preferred IIII to IV. IIII appears 87 percent of the time.
With that research, the Verdin Company considered that justification to use IIII instead of IV, explaining that it balances the VIII and makes the dial more pleasing to the eye.”