I know that if you have a list of numbers then you just separate them with a comma and then add "and" at the end. I also know that if you a have a long number like 78654 then you don't do any punctuating at all. What I need to know is what to do with a single number.

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    78 654 is a single number. Perhaps you mean a single-digit number. This has been answered elsewhere. – Edwin Ashworth May 30 '15 at 22:17

With 1 number there is only 1 option: just write it like a word in a sentence (although in this example they should be written 'one').

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Punctuating Numbers

  • If you have a number with three or less digits no comma or space is required.
  • If you have a number with four digits a comma or space is usually optional, e.g. 1,000 can be written as "1000", "1,000" or "1 000".
  • If you have a number with more than four digits a comma or space should be used, e.g. 10,000 would be written as "10,000" or "10 000".

I also believe you were asking about how to list punctuated numbers. This would be done like this:

10,000, 20,000, 30,000 and 40,000.

or like this:

10 000, 20 000, 30 000 and 40 000.

If you want to list single-digit numbers then you would do it like this:

1, 2, 3 and 4.

or like this:

One, two, three and four.

Writing Numbers in Full

This mainly depends on which style manual you use.

As a general rule numbers from zero to ten are written in full, e.g. "one", "two" and "three".

You may also encounter these rules:

  • Numbers with three digits or less should be written in full, e.g. 150 would become "one hundred and fifty".
  • Numbers that appear at the start of a paragraph or chapter, unless they are part of a date or a year, should be written in full.
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The general rule for single-digit numbers is to spell them out.

For general writing, most guides agree that you should use words for the numbers one through nine, [...]

So, if you wanted to say that you have 5 apples, you would write:

I have five apples.

For longer numbers, it can depend on the style you're using and what type of document you're writing:

[continued from above] but for larger numbers the rules vary wildly from style guide to style guide. Some say to use words for the numbers one to one hundred, one to ten, any word that can be written with one or two words, and so on.

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