# Questions tagged [number]

Questions about Chinese numbers and counting.

50 questions
Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
4k views

### Number two in chinese: 二 vs 两

I always knew, from my studies of Japanese, that the number two is 二 (èr). I am not sure about the actual etymology, but looking at the character, it's understandable why it represents the number "2". ...
2k views

### Why is 两 used for quantities of two rather than 二?

I understand that 两 is used instead of 二 when dealing with quantities of two. However, my question is - why? What are the historical reasons behind this? I looked at Wikitionary but it only had ...
2k views

### Where should I place the comma in large numbers?

If writing for an exclusively Chinese audience, would the number 五萬 be written as 5,0000 or 50,000? To flesh out the question, we could consider: 五千 5000 or 5,000 五萬 5,0000 or 50,000 ...
948 views

### Rules for saying numbers

I just wondered what are the rules of saying numbers... For example: 10 = 十 19 = 十九 100 = 一百 1,000 = 一千 10,000 = 一萬 but 119 = 一百一十九 then 110 = 一百一 1,100 = 一千一 11,000 = 一萬一 and then 10,110 = ...
3k views

### Different pronunciation for the number 'one'?

I was talking to my friend (native Chinese) the other day and when she read out a phone number she said "yao" for all the "ones" in the phone number. However, as far as I remember, ...
958 views

### 份, 个, 本, 两: How do they function in these sentences?

I've been working with Rosetta Stone for about 2 weeks now, and due to the immersion (from the start, the entire program is entirely Chinese—no English anywhere), they don't do any explaining of ...
122 views

### Syntax of 'Number Number MeasureWord'

What are the rules governing expressions such as 七八成 (seventy or eighty percent) or 一两个 (one or two)? Must the numerals be monosyllables? What are the restrictions on the measure words? Can there be ...
390 views

### Are there more special numerals like 廿?

In Hong Kong herbal tea shops, you will see a tea called "廿四味" (24 flavours) (you will also hear "廿蚊" to mean "20 dollars" in small shops) In this case 廿 (niàn or pán) has the meaning "20". Are ...
409 views

### How to write 400,002,000 in Chinese properly?

I got a number, 400,002,000, I wonder how to read it? Should it be one of these two? Or something else? 四亿零二千 四亿二千
1k views

### How would I say £10.50?

I'm not sure if it is simply said, "10 英镑 50"？ In the UK we often drop the pence at the end and just state the decimal amount (10 pounds 50), but not sure if in Chinese it works the same. Any help ...
855 views

### What's the relationship between “separate” and “eight” (old and modern meanings of 八)?

Zhongwen.com says that 八 is an "ideograph representing division", what is easy to see. So the old meaning of "separate" is also clear. But how did it came to represent the number 8?...
553 views

### When do we use “廿”, “卅” and “卌”?

I am aware of a related question and I know that "廿" means 20. "卅" means 30. "卌" means 40. But I am wondering how to use them correctly. When and how do we use "廿", "卅" and "卌"? For example, are ...
558 views

### 一、 marker meaning? Ordinal number?

What does the drop in 一、 mean?
446 views

### Why do we have to say 一百 一千 but not 一十?

This has always stumped me as all other base 10 numbers (>10) in Chinese you declare 1 through 9 for the quantity [1] of these units but you only have to declare 2 through 9 for 十 as 1 is implied [2] ...
682 views

### How to pronounce 廿卅卌 in Chinese?

I originally just wanted to ask something about 廿 (20). But as I searched on the internet I found 卅(30) and 卌(40) as well, and I have to admit that I didn't know these two. I think 廿 is pronounced as ...
379 views

### Grammar for counting in Chinese (for non-native speakers of Chinese)

I need to write a program that can insert the count of objects into a text - without knowing virtually anything about the Chinese language. While for English this needs to distinguish between singular ...
172 views

99 views

### Are there Escher sentences in Chinese? [kinda technical]

I'm a linguist with an extremely superficial knowledge of Chinese, so I'd like to query some native speakers about a grammatical phenomenon I've been thinking about for some time. In Indoeuropean ...
700 views

### Why people more frequently say “三四个”, less frequently say “三五个” or “四五个” or “五六个”, and even more less frequently say “四六个”？

Here are the numbers of my google searh result with inverted commas: 三五个：11,400,000 三四个：33,800,000 四五个：14,500,000 五六个：12,600,000 四六个：4,710,000 As can be observed, the frequency of "三四个" stands out ...
520 views

### When should I use 兆 instead of 万亿?

In the following sentence: 据悉，日本政府此次提出了在东京奥运会召开的2020年，使访日游客增至4000万人次，消费额达到8万亿日元的目标。 In this sentence, 万亿 is used instead of 兆, to express 10^12 digit. In Chinese, now 兆(zhào) might be rarely used ...
497 views

### Expressing numbers in scientific notation

I assume that scientific discussion in Chinese uses scientific notation, such as 5×1012. How would I read such a number aloud? I looked at the rules for saying numbers, as well as the Wikipedia ...
165 views

### Can 九十 = “ninety” also mean “nine or ten” (like how 三四 means “three or four”)?

It's normal in Chinese to say something like: 他大概三四岁左右 (source) he is probably around 3 or 4 years old This is called Approximating with sequential numbers on the Chinese Grammar Wiki. However, ...
539 views

### When Chinese speakers read Arabic numbers, do they still read them in Chinese?

Often you see Arabic numbers among Chinese texts for example: 我想要321餃子 would that be read as "three hundred" or as "三百二十一"? This may seem obvious but thought I'd seek clarification. Learning the ...
352 views

### 佰 vs 百: inconsistency in use

I saw a portion of a video course of Japanese tutorials aimed at Hong Kong Cantonese speakers, and notice that while introducing Japanese numbers, they translated the Japanese word for 600 as 六百, then ...
95 views

### “Banking” alternatives for digit characters?

I heard, that there are more complex "banking" alternatives for digit characters: 一二三四五六七八九十 provided in order to fraud protect. Is this true and how can I find a table for them? May be 零 is and ...
117 views

### Can I express the numbers at more than one decimal point using 成?

I know that if you want to express "X-tenth(s)", you can use 成. For example: 增产三成 上座率有九成。 However, these only express the figure at one decimal point. If you want to express any figure at ...
3k views

### Is there any distinction between 二百 (èrbǎi) and 两百 (liǎng bǎi) which both mean “two hundred”?

Both 二百 (èrbǎi) and 两百 (liǎng bǎi) mean "two hundred". Baidu gives them 55.1 million and 31.5 million hits, respectively, indicating 二百 is somewhat more common. I'm wondering if there's any ...
310 views

### What's the grammatical structure of 这是你第一次来中国吗？

I am confused about the sentence 这是你第一次来中国吗？ I think I know the correct translation: "Is this the first time you go to China?" However, I am confused about the grammatical structure of the sentence. ...
500 views

### Is Classical Chinese the shortest language?

Generally speaking, when a lengthy document or a book is translated into different languages, will the classical Chinese be the shortest translation? To put in another way, if the same book is ...
530 views

### 兆 as (part of) a number

CEDICT shows 兆 as "… / million / mega- / trillion / tera- / billion (old)". Is it ever actually used numerically, or is it standard to use Arabic numbers (or M/T for prefixes) to eliminate ambiguity? ...
2k views

304 views

145 views

### What does 他得经历九九八十一难 refer to?

I was watching a 西游记 adaptation from Little Fox Chinese and I've come across a sentence with numbers I can't quite understand. I read the translation but yet it doesn't make sense: "观音菩萨吃惊地看着信使。“...
258 views

### Nouns that don't require a measure word

Some of the time nouns don't require measure words. 三年，四周，五天，六秒，七日 ... Are there any more nouns (time nouns or otherwise) that don't require a MW ? Is there a comprehensive list somewhere ?
342 views

### Why 250 is a rude word in Chinese? [duplicate]

In mordern Chinese, why is the number 250(二百五) a rude word? Why do people use this number for stupid person?
116 views

### Why is there a 零 after 块 when you pronounce 1000.20元? It's 一千块零二毛， but why?

Recently I came across a lesson in a textbook that was about money, numerals, and quantities in general. There was a puzzling entry claiming that 1000.20元 should be pronounced as 一千块零二毛。 Honestly, I ...
278 views

### Why is 两十万 (liǎng shí wàn) okay when it contains 两十 (liǎng shí) which is incorrect?

The accepted answer to Number two in chinese: 二 vs 两 writes: Numbers that are larger than 100, e.g. 两百, 两千三百六十二. 百, 千, and 万 can be seen as a sort of measure word. Now, 十万 (shí wàn) means "hundred ...
68 views

### How many 虾 are 三只半虾？

I was reading about 《三只半虾》 齐白石， 以画虾享誉画坛。 三只虾：3 prawns 半虾：half a prawn 一半只虾： half a prawn 三只半虾：3 and 1 half prawns?? or 3 half prawns = 1 and 1 half prawns?? *三半只虾？？？= ？
150 views

### Chinese numerals or Arabic numerals?

In formal writting in Chinese, should we write 事情已经过去了一万二千三百四十五天。 or 事情已经过去了12345天。 or 事情已经过去了12,345天。 Which one is considered more standard?
125 views

### Is there an equivalent of “alpha, beta…” for enumeration of software in Chinese?

In English I can do: 1, 2, 3... I, II, III... alpha, beta... (for instance, the "alpha version" of a software) What options are available for enumerations in Chinese? Specially to identify ...
398 views

### Should 118 be read as 一百一十八 or 一百十八?

Should the number 118 be read as 一百一十八 or 一百十八? A related question: How to read 2018年? 两千零一十八年? 二千零一十八年? 二零一八年? 两千零十八年? 二千零十八年?
584 views

### Why do the chinese count with 正?

I have seen a couple of shop keepers (in small - mid sized shops) in Hong Kong counting some routine things with this character : "正". The actual tally would start off with the first stoke of that ...
147 views

### Informal asian signs for numbers

Some years ago in Manchester I was attending a English class for foreigners. While waiting for the teacher a Korean or Chinese girl was jotting down some symbols on her notebook. I asked what was she ...
220 views

### Numbering for mobile verification call to China in Chinese

I am making a chat application , so for number verification I need to make calls (your verification code is 1234) on the number. I want to know if I called to China in Chinese then how the numbers are ...
4k views

### A good price to offer - Chinese Numerical Significance [closed]

I am trying to buy from an older Chinese couple and am trying to come up with an enticing offer. The listing price is 388K but I am looking to pay around 350K. Someone pointed out that 388 is a good ...
72 views

### Writing-out numbers in mandarin till 19999 algorithm

My current task includes writing-out numbers in different languages, also mandarin. I have never grappled with mandarin but I checked several resource and tested my algorithm to the best of my believe....
49 views

### Which is correct: 一 (yao1) or 幺 (yao1)? [duplicate]

In many sources I have come across the explanation that 一 is pronounced yao1 instead of yi1 when used in things like telephone numbers. For example, my HSK textbooks use 一 (yao1), and I have seen it ...
486 views

### How to state fractions with units of measurement? (e.g. 0.75 lb, 1.5 lbs, 1.75 lbs, etc.)

"1 lb" is 一磅 and "half-pound" is 半磅. And "3/4" is 四分之三. So far, so good. But I'm not clear on how to read measurements like 3/4 lb, 1.5 lbs and 1.75 lbs in Chinese. My guesses below would be: 3/4 lb ...