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Questions tagged [numbers]

Questions relating to the use of numbers or numerals in English.

7
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2answers
653 views

Why are two-digit numbers in Jonathan Swift's “Gulliver's Travels” (1726) written in “German style”?

I have been reading "Gulliver's Travels" (Otherwise known more verbosely as "Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World. In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First a Surgeon, and then a Captain of ...
1
vote
2answers
55 views

Is there an equivalent to a 'quarter' for twelfths?

I've heard of quintants, septants, octants, and quandrants, but I can't find a word for a sector of a twelfths. Any ideas?
0
votes
1answer
27 views

Plus sign before or after hyphenated word

Let's say there's a set of buildings with differing numbers of units in each. I would like to describe them as two or more unit buildings. Writing it out with the number, would I write "2+-unit ...
5
votes
2answers
69 views

Were days ever written as ordinal numbers when writing day-month-year?

I know that the day is written as a cardinal number (1, 2, 3) and not an ordinal number (1st, 2nd, 3rd) in the day-month-year and the month-day formats. But was there ever a time when ordinal numbers ...
1
vote
1answer
42 views

Is there a name for all numbers different than zero?

The names for the number 0 include "zero", "cipher", "null", "naught", "nought", "love", "duck", "nil", "nada", "zilch", "zip", "o", "aught", and "ought". There are various subtleties of usage amongst ...
0
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0answers
24 views

What we should write in roman for ordinal numbers? [duplicate]

As we write 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th what we should write in roman for the same way?
0
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0answers
16 views

How to ask about something which of the first, the second, the third. etc the thing is? [duplicate]

I know the question itself sounds strange but I cannot think of a better wording. I will provide two examples below: (1) 13 is the sixth smallest prime number; how would I ask someone about 13 so ...
1
vote
0answers
15 views

Plural vs Singular when the number 1 is represented in integer vs decimal form [duplicate]

If I have a noun of cardinality 1, I am taught that I use the singular form. E.g. I have 1 Apple If the value is still 1, but represented as 1.0, do I still use the singular form? E.g. I have 1.0 ...
0
votes
1answer
36 views

When to use 'the amount of' and not e.g. 'increase physical exercise' / 'increase the amount of physical exercise'?

When do you need to use the number of or the amount of with a noun? For example, "If people go to gyms more, they will increase their physical activity." OR "If people go to gyms more, they ...
1
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0answers
33 views

What term predated “even” when referring to numbers?

Had this posted on the Linguistics stackexchange, and was pointed here as a more appropriate spot to ask. In doing some poking around in etymologies, I noticed that while "odd" in the sense of "odd ...
0
votes
1answer
36 views

Hundreds of times higher?

Is it correct to use the expression "hundreds of times higher" when the difference is 3.08 - 3.85 times higher? This is coming from Twitter, someone said that there was an increase of "hundreds of ...
1
vote
0answers
87 views

Why are there are so many words for “zero”?

Null, nil and naught are all synonyms of zero, and to my knowledge, zero is the only number that has this many cognitive synonyms, if not more. Why is this? Does it have to do with English being ...
0
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2answers
88 views

How to write numbers concerning physical quantities?

Is there a rule specifying how one should separate thousands in numbers? Should I put a comma in this phrase, “500–1500 ohms”, so it would become “500–1,500 ohms”? If so why?
0
votes
1answer
52 views

Apostrophe Use In Abbreviated Decade Which Is Also A Possessive

I always put apostrophes before abbreviated decades. Ex: The '60s. However, what if you want to abbreviate a decade that is also possessive of the word that comes after it? Ex: Classic dance genres ...
1
vote
1answer
27 views

Measurements - how they should be written in a list

Which is correct? a. Images were obtained at a distance of 4, 8, 12, 16 and 20 mm from the bottom of the plate. b. Images were obtained at a distance of 4 mm, 8 mm, 12 mm, 16 mm and 20 mm from the ...
0
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1answer
45 views

Is this an acceptable way of writing the count of items in a sentence?

My father served in the logistics branch of the Indian Air Force and he had a very particular style of representing the number of items of a certain object. For example, he would use this sentence: ...
2
votes
1answer
36 views

Beginning list items with numerals

Most well-known style guides dictate that numbers should always be spelled out at the beginning of a sentence (Forty-seven percent of people...), even to the point of recommending rewriting to avoid ...
1
vote
1answer
188 views

How do ordinal suffixes work with mathematical constants and other non-Arabic numbers?

This question was inspired by a tweet from the FakeUnicode Twitter account, a semi-novelty account sharing various examples in the wild of bugs, glitches and other unintended results from improperly ...
2
votes
1answer
44 views

“The number of steps is infinite” or “The number of steps is infinity”? [closed]

In a mathematical paper about random-walks. Which is more correct: "The number of steps in the random-walk is infinite" or "The number of steps in the random-walk is infinity"?
2
votes
3answers
148 views

How do you pronounce “103rd”?

The number 103 can be pronounced as “One hundred and three” or “One o three”. Can “103rd” be pronounced as “One hundred and third” or “One o third?” (Especially in referring to a name of a street, ...
1
vote
2answers
147 views

What would be the correct way of writing 10⁻³⁶ second into words?

I tried Google, and I couldn't find the answer, so I have to have ask this question here. Is this correct? one millionth of a billionth of a trillionth of a second. I can write one 'undecillionth' ...
7
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7answers
4k views

Can I say eight-gon, nine-gon and ten-gon instead of octa-, nona-, and deca-gon?

As a non-native English speaker I struggle with Greek prefixes. Am I allowed to use just normal English numbers in place of them? Is it natural? Or do I have to learn how those Greek prefixes work at ...
3
votes
3answers
186 views

How would you say “0.4 - 1g?”

Assuming I don't want to say "zero point four grams to one gram," would it be: "zero point four to one gram" or "zero point four to one grams" or neither? I'm leaning towards the second one ...
2
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1answer
24 views

Are Only + Number Adjectives?

In the sentence "Only eight apples grew on the tree." Are both "only" and "eight" adjectives?
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3answers
104 views

Term for a “unit-ed” (versus “unitless”) quantity

What is a term for the class of measured quantities that have a unit, as distinct from those that are unitless? This term describes any quantity with a unit: 5.3 seconds $0.00 −17.28 metres 4½ ...
3
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5answers
664 views

How infrequent is “a non-zero chance”?

I misinterpreted the expression “a non-zero chance” as an emphatic way to stress that there was no possibility or likelihood of something happening. there is a non-zero chance that they will pay ...
5
votes
1answer
238 views

Use of degree symbol for Latinate ordinal number shorthand

I remember often having professors in college use degree symbols to write shorthand versions of Latinate ordinal numbers. For example: 1° Primary 2° Secondary 3° Tertiary 4° Quaternary ...
0
votes
2answers
83 views

numbering from up to down

I want to translate a sentence from Persian to English, the sentence I want to say is "the children should tell numbers from up to down and conversely" but I am not sure does it correct?
1
vote
3answers
71 views

Should you use a comma after a number that falls at the end of a clause, even if the number has commas in it (ex: 1,000,000)?

For example, in the sentence The cost is anticipated to be $1,000,000, inclusive of pre-construction costs. is it appropriate to use a comma after $1,000,000 or should a semicolon be used?
1
vote
1answer
538 views

How to read Figure xx.x or Section xx.x

I wonder that whether there is a special reading way pertaining to American or British. For example, Figure 12.3 shows a paused video touched on in Section 2.10 with the width, height, and ...
44
votes
11answers
11k views

When did “a buck” start being used to mean a unit of 100? (E.g. “a buck fifty” for 150 lbs.)

Before you answer, please note: I'm only interested in when this usage was established in common (American) parlance. I know what the term means and I don't need it defined, nor do I require an ...
1
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2answers
370 views

Has “N times less” become commonplace? [duplicate]

I've heard more and more people saying "A is N times less than B" in many contexts. I even saw in a news journal (forgot whether it was Time or Newsweek), "The object was 3 times closer than the ...
0
votes
1answer
432 views

Why does “No” mean “Number?” [duplicate]

I frequently see the abbreviation "No" to mean "Number" (or "Nos" to mean "Numbers") instead of the much more common meaning of the word (a negative statement or denial). Sources cited here say it's ...
1
vote
0answers
186 views

Why does “zero of one qualifications” sound better than “zero of one qualification” even though you only have one qualification? [closed]

Of the two phrases: zero of one qualification zero of one qualifications Because one is singular, it should be qualification without the plural suffix ‑s. But for reasons I cannot explain, to me ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

“Numbers” or “number?” Which sentence is correct?

Which sentence is correct? Why? In 2000, the number of Vietnamese students studied in Russia and France was around 3 million and 3.5 million respectively. In 2000, the numbers of Vietnamese students ...
0
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2answers
40 views

Should the word before a numeral be capitalized

If you type out week 1 or top 25 matchup, would the word before the numeral be capitalised?
2
votes
1answer
641 views

How to speak the line number? [closed]

What is the most common way to identify a particular line of code in a talk or lecture? On the seventeenth line of this code" On the line seventeen of this code" On the line number seventeen of this ...
1
vote
0answers
29 views

Numeration in policies [closed]

Is numeration in policies obligatory or optional? I create different policies as per GDPR for internal use and have an idea to skip the numeration because of redundancy, can I do this? I know, it ...
2
votes
2answers
105 views

Is there a standard way to read “30+”?

I have just come across the following sentence: Our team has cataloged 30+ [design patterns] across various areas of the framework so far. I have often seen the pattern "number + plus sign" to ...
1
vote
1answer
97 views

Is it essential to use comma in a big number?

Is it necessary to use comma in a big number? For example, if anyone writes one million four hundred thousand and two as 1400002 instead of 1,400,002 on answer sheet of listening section of IELTS test,...
1
vote
1answer
83 views

In written English, do you write fractional inequality with a percent-plus or a plus-percent? [closed]

In written English, which of the following is the correct way to convey I have a greater than or equal to ninety percent success rate according to all measures? I have 90%+ success rate across ...
3
votes
1answer
109 views

Why do distributive adjectives mostly take a singular noun while quantitative adjectives mostly take a plural noun?

I am sure that there are some exceptions to this, but I have noticed that distributive adjectives like “each”, “every”, “either”, “neither”, etc., mostly take a singular noun, while quantitative ...
0
votes
2answers
128 views

What part of speech is 'point' in the phrase 'nought point five'?

What grammatical evidence is there for allocating the word point to a particular part of speech in phrases like nought point five or nine point nine nine, where these phrases would represent the ...
0
votes
0answers
57 views

What is the standard way to number rows in a table?

First of all, it is not quite a language specific question but I do not know a better place to ask. Suppose we have a table, say something like this. What if I want to add a column which contains ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

From the age or ages of fifteen to twenty-one?

Are both examples correct or is there only one way to write it? The program is for people from the age of fifteen to twenty-one. OR The program is for people from the ages of fifteen to twenty-...
0
votes
1answer
98 views

How can I say “¹⁄ₓ” in words?

It is possible to state a fraction such as ¾ in words as follows: three fourths. Can someone please let me know how to say ¹⁄ₓ in words?
0
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2answers
76 views

Word for the action or result of expressing a telephone number as letters/words

You can use the letters on a standard telephone keypad to encode/decode a number to/from letters, eg 439225563 -> HEY CALL ME Is there a name from either the result "HEY CALL ME" or the action of ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

Is there a comma in “one easy place”? [duplicate]

Which of the following is correct? If both are acceptable which is preferred? Our product lets you manage all of your stuff in one easy place. Our product lets you manage all of your stuff in ...
0
votes
1answer
105 views

How do I write a variable as an ordinal number?

I'm charged with translating a technical document into English, and ran into a bit of an odd problem: the document refers to undefined numbers of elements, and uses letters to represent those numbers, ...
0
votes
2answers
3k views

Thousand/thousands?

If I am talking about money. I know that saying Thirty thousand dollars is correct. For eg., 'I gave you Thirty thousand dollars.' But if I am not adding 'dollars' in the end, then would I say Thirty ...