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Why is 16th century called "cinquecento" in Italian?

I am curious why is it not "sedici"?

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If it's just a shorter way to say it then my next question would be how does one say V century in Italian?

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Made a mistake, I meant how does one say VI century?

For learning: Italian
Base language: English
Category: Culture



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    Best Answer - Chosen by the Asker
    Millecinquecento-1600 is abbreviated in cinquecento.
    Then the talk about 500-600, we say 'quinto secolo' [dopo Cristo];
    ambiguities might happen but actually quite seldom.
    VI century : Sesto secolo [dopo Cristo].
    [dopo Cristo] is an option, depending upon the context and the possibility of
    ambiguous meaning.

    Because the XVI century is from 1500 till 1600, the XX century is from 1900 till 2000 etc etc ..

    16th century = sedicesimo secolo
    Il Cinquecento ( a shorter way to say Millecinquecento) because is from 1500 till 1600.
    It's the same with other centuries from 1200 till 2000
    20th century = ventesimo secolo (from 1900 till 2000; Il Novecento)
    Es La più importante invenzione del Novecento/ventesimo secolo é...
    (The most important invention of the 20th century is....)
    (It's like the forties, the sixties, the seventies in English about years)

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