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68

If your argument was that thousands means 2000+, then you could show your boyfriend the following dictionaries, which define thousands in your favour: merriam-webster freedictionary collins Do not show him the following dictionaries, which define thousands in his favour: oxford dictionary.com cambridge I'd say opinion is well and truly divided.


48

I have also noticed when reading French and Spanish texts, that it is quite normal to write numbers below ten in full as well, e.g. "los tres hombres que..." instead of "los 3 hombres que..." My guess is that writing numbers in full in a European language is easier than using Roman numerals, which were the mainstay until the Arabic-Hindu number system came ...


41

Actually, eleven and twelve also seem to be derived from 10+1 and 10+2. Let me quote from the classic book Number: The Language of Science by Tobias Dantzig (1930, republished with nice foreword by Barry Mazur): Indeed, there is no mistaking the influence of our ten fingers on the “selection” of the base of our number system. In all Indo-European ...


41

Assuming you mean 10-99 inclusive, the phrase you want is "two-digit number".


41

It's an ordinal indicator: In written languages, an ordinal indicator is a letter, or group of letters, following a numeral denoting that it is an ordinal number, rather than a cardinal number. Historically these letters were "elevated terminals", that is to say the last few letters of the full word denoting the ordinal form of the number displayed as a ...


40

Both zeros and zeroes are acceptable, see e.g. Merriam-Webster, Wiktionary or TheFreeDictionary. The usage stats from the Corpus of Contemporary American English (COCA) and the British National Corpus (BNC) look as follows: COCA BNC zeros 312 132 zeroes.[n] 106 5 So in practice zeros is preferred in the US and ...


37

You probably don't want to do it at all. Noninteger numbers are best written in their decimal form (1.5, 5.0). If they can be expressed as simple fractions, you can do that instead: “one and a half” for 1.5. If you absolutely want to write it out, then you'll have to do it the way they are spelt: “one point five”, “five point zero”. You can use oh instead ...


34

You could make the argument that English does not have singular and plural markers per se, but rather singular and "non-singular". (I'm not necessarily advocating this view, just throwing it out there.) The evidence would be that the singular form is used to refer to one of something, while the plural form is used to refer to all other amounts. This ...


32

0.25 miles. The rule I follow is that you use the singular only when talking of exactly one mile. You'd also say half a mile, quarter of a mile, etc., but in these cases it's as though you're still talking of "a mile" first, and then taking half or quarter of it. Let me say something further, with the caveat that it may be my own idiosyncratic usage: use ...


32

They are called tally marks. Tally marks, or hash marks, are a unary numeral system. They are a form of numeral used for counting. They allow updating written intermediate results without erasing or discarding anything written down. However, because of the length of large numbers, tallies are not commonly used for static text.


30

In computing circles, we often refer to numbers like 10K, 24M, 120G as being human-readable or humanized numbers. This is often in the context of byte counts, which can get notoriously unwieldy with modern storage sizes (e.g. saying I have 323416563175 bytes free on my computer), though I have seen it applied to other contexts as well. For example, the man ...


28

I seem to remember the old askoxford.com site said either was acceptable: CDs and CD's. But now the replacement Oxford Dictionaries Online firmly suggests to avoid the apostrophe except in a few special cases: Apostrophes and plural forms The general rule is that you should not use an apostrophe to form the plurals of nouns, abbreviations, or ...


26

When I learned this “rule” (in first grade, I believe), it was explained that and separates the whole part from the fractional part: 2⅔=two and two thirds. The word and would only represent the decimal point in decimal numbers when they are read out in the formal “fractional” reading of decimals, as 2.3=two and three tenths, or 1.75=one and seventy-five ...


26

It depends on whether two-thirds (or any similar proportion) is regarded as a measure of amount or of number. In (1), the emphasis is likely to be on the amount of pizza eaten, and not on the number of individual thirds, so (b) would be appropriate. In contrast, in (2) the emphasis is on the number of visitors who were men, so plural concord, as in (a), is ...


26

Well, you have two options: Option 1: re-arrange your sentence or invent some spurious phrase to put after the decimal so that it looks less obvious; Option 2: don't worry about it and just have a cup of tea.


23

"One hundred and thirty-five" is perfectly correct, although the "and" tends to be removed in American English. It makes sense mathematically, since "and" is synonymous with "plus" — two apples and three apples makes five apples. One hundred, and thirty-five, makes 135. The "and" is particularly useful when articulating a series of numbers. "One hundred ...


21

I don't believe there is a specific term which applies only to numbers, but we can say such numbers are abbreviated. For example, the University of North Carolina says of such numeric suffixes: K: an informal abbreviation for one thousand used in expressions where the unit is understood, such as "10K run" (10 kilometers) or "700K disk" (700 kilobytes or ...


19

The pronunciation/spelling-out of "1:1" is "one to one" or "one-to-one." I just wanted to add that you wouldn't say "ratio one-to-one." You would either say "a ratio of one-to-one" or "a one-to-one ratio."


18

Although people do use it mean 1900–1909, it isn't a misuse to use it to mean 1900–1999. Another way to refer to the first decade would be "just after the turn of the century", or "at the turn of the century". I would say 1920s to mean 1920–1929 though. If you do a corpus query (COCA) you'll find that 1900s is almost always preceded by early. (121 times ...


18

The usual way is just to find the Latin root and add the suffix: quintuple, sextuple, septuple, nonuple, etc. For numbers beyond eight or nine, the -uple constructions sounds rather strained, if not downright silly. (Duodecuple? Really?) I'd recommend -fold as an alternative ("a ninety-fold increase"), or substitute another counter noun altogether: an ...


18

There are two main ways to express decimal numbers in words. Reading the decimal. In this method you read the part of the number left of the decimal point as a normal integer, then the word “point”, followed by the numbers to the right of the decimal point. They are read either as individual digits, or sometimes in pairs as two-digit numbers. Examples: ...


18

Both are commonly used and acceptable. There are various common cases where a superficially singular subject can or indeed must be associated with a plural verb: The government [are/is] considering the proposal. A lot of these matters [have/*has] been dealt with. The majority [are/??is] pleased with the outcome. A half of all pensioners ...


18

Numbers from 10 to 99 inclusive are often referred to as double figures in the UK. For example, from yesterday's (British) news: The death toll during the recent cold snap has hit double figures - as forecasters predicted up to another foot of snow is on the way.


18

If someone said "I have thousands of dollars" and really they had $1900, then you would say they are a liar or romancer. If they really had $2100, you'd think they are nominally correct, but being somewhat misleading. I'd say it gets to be "thousands" around $3000. One may even say thousands' meaning up until the next threshold, which would be up to roughly ...


17

I believe the words you have there are Latinate ordinal numbers.


17

This is indeed a classic. The question has been asked many times around the web, and there appear to be two schools: one that agrees with you, and one that thinks both constructions are OK and takes both to mean 15 sweets. I think those people are nuts, but hey they might be the majority. I say, why use a construction that is either illogical or ambiguous ...


17

The numerals with endings are merely abbreviations for the words written out as text. When in doubt, write the word out. Thirty-first becomes 31st, eleventh 11th, forty-second 42nd, fiftieth 50th, and so on.


16

Is this still the case or has the world aligned itself to the American way? At least Britain seems to have largely aligned itself that way. Quoting Wikipedia, which has an excellent entry on the topic (Long and short scales): [In the UK,] "billion" has meant 109 in most sectors of official published writing for many years now. The UK ...


16

Etymonline has this: Originally pronounced as it still is in only, and in dial. good 'un, young 'un, etc.; the now-standard pronunciation "wun" began c.14c. in southwest and west England (Tyndale, a Gloucester man, spells it won in his Bible translation), and it began to be general 18c. Wiktionary adds: one and once are pronounced differently from ...


16

In English, the singular is used for one thing, and the plural is generally used for anything else. This includes more than one (any number), as well as zero.



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