Easy Learning English

Numbers - Easy Learning Grammar

There are two common kinds of number:Cardinal numbers are used in all forms of counting that involve a total.
one chairtwo chairs
a hundred peopleten thousand pounds
Ordinal numbers are used to talk about where something is placed in an ordered sequence. They are often used right after the definite article or after a possessive.
  • The first horse in was disqualified.
  • He’s celebrating his fifty-first birthday in August.
  • The company has just celebrated its one hundred and fiftieth anniversary.
Ordinals are mostly formed by adding -th to a cardinal number.
fourth          twentieth          hundredth     
fifthforty-ninthmillionth
sixtheighty-sixththousandth
nine hundred and ninety ninth
Some examples of exceptions are the words first, second, and third, and combinations which contain them, such as twenty-first.Cardinal numbers can be used at the beginning of a noun phrase, like determiners.
one chairtwo chairs
a hundred peopleten thousand pounds
or on their own, like pronouns.
  • And then there were three.
  • Four of them came towards us.
  • The other two went to get help.
  • Grammatically speaking, the words next, last, and another can also be regarded as ordinal numbers.
  • It rained on the last day of our holiday.
  • The next horse in was declared the winner.
  • Oh no, not another birthday!
Ordinal numbers and the words next and last are sometimes called postdeterminers, since they come after the word the or a possessive .
  • The next three days are going to be very exciting.
  • The last three years have been difficult for everyone.
  • We have to get off the bus at the next stop.
  • An ordinal, as well as next, last, and another, can be used together with a cardinal number in the same noun phrase.
  • The first three correct entries will win a prize.
  • He scored another three goals before the end of the match.
  • To show that a cardinal number is only approximate, the word, some is often used before it.
  • Some two hundred people gathered in the pouring rain.

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