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You will learn in this lesson: Arabic numbers, cardinal numbers, ordinal numbers in Arabic.


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The table below shows examples of Arabic numbers. The first and the fifth columns have numbers used in some Arab countries; they’re not of Arabic origins but still used in many places especially copies of the Holy Qur’an …. Nowadays what we call the Arabic numbers are the numbers shown on the columns 2 and 6, which are used by the Arab world as well as the rest of the world.

 








Arabic Numbers

٠

0

sifr

صفر

١

1

wahid

واحد

٢

2

ithnan

إثنان

٣

3

thalatha (th as in bath)

ثلاثة

٤

4

arba’a

أربعة

٥

5

khamsa

خمسة

٦

6

sitta

ستة

٧

7

sab’a

سبعة

٨

8

thamaniya (th in thin)

ثمانية

٩

9

tis’a

تسعة

١٠

10

‘ashra

عشرة

١١

11

ahada ‘ashar

إحدى عشر

١٢

12

ithna ‘ashar

إثنا عشر

١٣

13

thalatha ‘ashar

ثلاثة عشر

١٤

14

arba’a ‘ashar

أربعة عشر

١٥

15

khamsa ‘ashar

خمسة عشر

١٦

16

sitta ‘ashar

ستة عشر

١٧

17

sab’a ‘ashar

سبعة عشر

١٨

18

thamaniya ‘ashar

ثمانية عشر

١٩

19

tis’a ‘ashar

تسعة عشر

٢٠

20

‘ishrun

عشرون

٢١

21

wahed wa-’ishrun

واحد و عشرون

٢٢

22

ithnane wa-’ishrun

إثنان وعشرون

٢٣

23

thalatha wa-’ishrun

ثلاثة و عشرون

٢٤

24

arba’a wa-’ishrun

أربعة و عشرون

٢٥

25

khamsa wa-’ishrun

خمسة و عشرون

٢٦

26

sitta wa-’ishrun

ستة و عشرون

٢٧

27

sab’a wa-’ishrun

سبعة وعشرون

٢٨

28

thamaniya wa-’ishrun

ثمانية و عشرون

٢٩

29

tis’a wa-’ishrun

تسعة و عشرون

٣٠

30

thalathun

ثلاثون

٣١

31

wahid wa-thalathun

واحد و ثلاثون

٤٠

40

arba’un

أربعون

٤٢

42

ithnan wa-arba’un

إثنان و أربعون

٥٠

50

khamsun

خمسون

٥٣

53

thalatha wa-khamsun

ثلاثة و خمسون

٦٠

60

sittun

ستون

٦٤

64

arba'a wa-sittun

أربعة و ستون

٧٠

70

sab’un

سبعون

٧٥

75

khamsa wa-sab’un

خمسة و سبعون

٨٠

80

thamanun

ثمانون

٨٦

86

sitta wa-thamanun

ستة و ثمانون

٩٠

90

tis’un

تسعون

٩٧

97

sab'a wa-tis’un

سبعة و تسعون

١٠٠

100

mi'a

مائة

١٠٠٠

1000

alf

ألف

١٠٠٠٠٠

100000

mi'at alf

مائة ألف

٢٠٠٠

2000

alfain

ألفين

١٠٠٠٠٠٠٠

10000000

Million

مليون

 

 

 

 

 

Forming numbers in Arabic is quite easy, from 13 to 19 you just place a number before ten for example 13 = three ten, instead of thirteen in English, 17 is seven ten in Arabic. From 21 to 99 you just need to reverse the numbers and add (wa- between the two numbers) 36 would be six wa- thirty instead of thirty six (sitta wa-thalathun), (wa means and).

0 is sifr in Arabic, from which the word cipher came. For 11 and 12 they’re irregular, so just remember how to write them by now (11 = ehda ‘ashar, 12 = ithna ‘ashar).

So in general, numbers standing alone are easy to use, or say. The hard part is that numbers 3 to 10 have a unique rule of agreement with nouns known as polarity: A numeral in masculine gender should agree with a feminine referrer and vice versa (thalathatu awlaad = three boys), boys are masculine plural, so the feminine form of number 3 should be used (which is thalathatu, and not thalathu which is the masculine form, the u at the end of numbers is used when a number is followed by another word to make an easy jump to the next word) (thalathu banaat = three girls) banaat = girls, which is feminine plural, therefore a masculine form of number 3 should be used (thalathu). That may sound complicated but once you get used to it, it will not be as hard as it seems now, besides most Arab natives make mistakes or simply don’t care about  matching the gender and the number.



 

Arabic Ordinal Numbers:

Ordinal numbers in Arabic are almost like the cardinal numbers, with some exceptions in the numbers from 1 to 10, and a slight difference in numbers from 11 and up.

Note that ordinal numbers in Arabic are somehow like adjectives, so they have to take the masculine, or feminine form. Please check the adjectives page for more information.

 

Arabic Cardinal Numbers

First

Awwal

Oula

Second

Thani

Thania

Third

Thaleth

Thaletha

Fourth

Rabe’

Rabe’a

Fifth

Khaames

Khaamesa

Sixth

Sadis

Sadisa

Seventh

Sabe’

Sabe’a

Eighth

Thamen

Thamena

Ninth

Tase’

Tase’a

Tenth

acher

achera

Eleventh

Hady achar

Hadiata achar

Twelfth

Thani achar

Thania achar

 

After 10 only the first number takes the feminine, for example 13th is thaleth achar for masculine, and thalethata achar for feminine, achar stays the same, the first half “thaleth” which means 3rd takes “a” in the feminine, and so does the rest of the ordinal number, except ten numbers like 20, 30, 40, 50, they look like cardinal numbers but they add “a” as a prefix for numbers starting with a consonant, for example: 70 = sab’un, 70th = asab’un (for both masculine and feminine), and they add “al” for ten numbers starting with a vowel, like: 40= arba’un, 40th = alarba’un.

 

If you are looking for a more extensive Arabic course, we recommend Breaking The Arabic Code

 

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