I learned that two tigers is said "两只老虎" but I wonder how to say twelve tigers, twenty two tigers in Chinese. Is that 十二只老虎 and 二十二只老虎 or 十两只老虎 and 二十两只老虎
1Should be 十二只老虎 and 二十二只老虎.– user4072Aug 20, 2014 at 4:01
As @songyuanyao says
二十二只老虎 are correct.
You cannot use
兩 here unless you literally meant to say "12 ounces of tiger (meat?)". The reason is that
兩 actually means "one pair". That is,
两只老虎 is "a pair of tigers". Notice that it is specifically one pair; which means you cannot use
二十两 to mean "twenty pairs" either.
兩 does get used in bigger numbers. But that's only strictly for two of something". For example:
- 一千兩百 - "One thousand and two hundred"
- 兩百 - "two hundred"
- 兩百兆 - "two hundred trillion"
In these cases, you are saying "a pair of one hundred", regardless of the rest of the number. This works because 100 is a named number in Chinese (as it is in English). The other numbers this works for are:
- 千 - thousand
- 萬 - ten thousand
- 億 - hundred million
- 兆 - trillion / million
- ...and other ridiculously large numbers that you'll likely never ever encounter.