Questions tagged [numbers]

Questions relating to the use of numbers or numerals in Latin or Greek, both as words (unus, duo) and Roman numerals (I, II).

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Is there a Latin word for 225th anniversary?

If bicentennial is the Latin word for the 200th anniversary, what word would one use for the 225th anniversary?
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4 votes
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Conciseness of Roman Numerals

I noticed earlier that a roman numeral (8) is written as VIII. It appears that it is more concise (less characters) to write it as IIX (meaning 2 before 10 instead of 3 after 5). Could someone give me ...
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Why does the tradition talk about four types of Latin numbers when there are more

In reviewing this question, a brief discussion arose in the comments about how many types of numbers Latin has. The suggestion was that the tradition states that there are four, and other types of ...
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Is neuter verb agreement of mīlia when paired with animate genitives a confirmed usage?

Having just reviewed this question, I find that I am surprised by the verb agreement in this sentence: Nam d[ecum] mīlia Americānōrum cōnāta sunt ad centiēs centēna mīlia dollāriōrum raedāriīs mittere ...
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Help with (big) numbers including 'decena'

I wonder if you could help me with the text below. I get the gist of the message, but am struggling with decena. Nam decēna mīlia Americānōrum cōnāta sunt ad centiēs centēna mīlia dollāriōrum ...
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7 votes
2 answers
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How big is "duas partes decimarum"?

This record is from The Cartulary of Newnham Priory, transcribing a record from 1166. Simon [II] de Beauchamp granted whole churches and fractions of other tithes to Newnham priory. Here is how it was ...
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3 votes
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A question about etymology of the Etruscan word for number eight

An often cited etymology is that the Etruscan word 𐌂𐌄​​𐌆𐌐 (kezp, eight) is a compound word from 𐌂𐌉​ (ki, three) and 𐌆𐌄𐌐 (zep, hand), that it meant literally "three plus the number of ...
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4 votes
0 answers
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Names for digits or numbers

How would you say "I write zeroes and ones" or "I need a fiver" or "the number seven" in Latin? There are a couple of cases where in some languages one uses instead of a ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Number of adjectives in polite plural address

This question concerns using the plural vos instead of the singular tu for polite address of a single person in Latin. This is not a classical feature but arises later. When using this address, are ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Is unius an irregular genitive?

I notice that the genitive of unus can apparently be either the regular uni, or can also be unius. Is this form, unius, just a completely irregular oddity, or is there some logical precedent for it? ...
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What does the "Roman" numeral Ɔ represent?

It's conceivable that the numeral Ɔ and letters it combines with are a mediaeval conceit rather than truly Roman — hopefully this is still on topic. I'm trying to decipher the publication date of a ...
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5 votes
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Correct pronunciation of full Latin dates

What is the correct Latin pronunciation of modern full dates, where the word 'anno' is omitted e.g. 'die 24 Augusti 1954 nata'? In which case stands the numeral of the year? Is the word 'anno' ...
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Does Latin have any words for specific numbers apart from the numbers themselves (akin to the English "dozen", for example)

In English, many numbers have specific words that denote them, distinct from the number itself. For example "dozen" means group of 12; "gross" means 144; and "score" ...
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2 answers
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1 to at least 200 Latin list cardinal numbers

Aiming to answer this Stack Exchange puzzle, I am looking for a list of the n first numbers with n being a positive integer greater than 200. I already have a list of the first 100 numbers by ...
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Does it make sense to display a decimal number such as 12.34 as Roman numerals? If not, how else?

I'm auto-converting any "Arabic" number in a text to Roman numerals. This means that: 123 Becomes: CXXIII But what to do when I encounter decimals such as: 12.34 ? Should I really do: XII....
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5 votes
1 answer
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Did "quartilis" exist?

In statistics, a point that separates out (a multiple of) 25% of the data set is called a "quartile". Similarly, if it separates out 20% of the data, it's a "quintile", 1% a "percentile", and in ...
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Why is largest number in Roman Numerals not represented as "MMMIM"?

according to wikipedia, the largest number Roman Numeral system can represent is represented like following: (answer below has much bigger number represented) MMMCMXCIX why can't it be represented ...
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3 votes
2 answers
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Two by four meters in size

If I want to describe the dimensions of my office, I might say that it is about two by four meters. How do I phrase this size, "two by four meters", in Latin? I don't just want to say that the area ...
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7 votes
2 answers
508 views

How were fractions written and pronounced?

In English, when we want to express parts of wholes and certain numbers of said parts, we use fractions consisting of a denominator indicating how many equal pieces an item has been broken or divided ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Why aren't cardinal numbers over three inflected?

I've been looking through some etymologies and it seems to me that cardinals past trēs aren't inflected. Is this correct, and if so, what's the logic in forming words with indeclinable numbers? Take, ...
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8 votes
2 answers
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An error message in Latin for my programming language

I am writing a piece of software that translates programs into programs (a "compiler", in informatics lingo) and my source language allows the programmer to specify Latin numerals. In case the ...
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8 votes
1 answer
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Why was ante tribus translated as "fifteen years ago"?

In an answer I posted here, I provided someone else's translation which translated ante tribus as "fifteen years ago". The translation provided in the question also translated tribus the same way: ...
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4 votes
2 answers
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Understanding "decimam decimae"

I'm struggling to see the logic behind the expression "decimam decimae". In the Vulgata, we read (Numbers 29: 11-13): In calendis autem offeretis holocaustum Domino, vitulos de armento duos, ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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Ordinal adjectives for single things modifying plural noun?

To refer to "the first and second chapters", do I say: capitula prima et secunda or: capitula primum et secundum?
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1 vote
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What would a Roman license plate number look like? [closed]

My state recently changed the formatting of our license plate numbers (from 123-ABC to ABC-1234) in an effort to increase the number of available plate numbers. This got me thinking as to what a Roman ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Quinquies and quinquiens

Consider the word quinquies/quinquiens ("five times"). It has two alternative spellings. Having the options -ies and -iens seems to be common for numerals of this kind. What is the origin of these ...
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6 votes
2 answers
288 views

Comparing decem and -decim

The Latin cardinal numbers starting at ten are decem, undecim, duodecim… Does the -decim (roughly "-teen") come from decem or from the same root? (I faintly recall decem and δέκα coming from ...
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3 votes
1 answer
162 views

What is a digit?

Is there a good Latin word for a digit or figure? I might want to say that the sum of the digits of 43 is 7 or that an actor was paid a six-figure salary for a movie. It occurred to me that I don't ...
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6 votes
1 answer
124 views

Singulae aut unae scopae?

Tuomo Pekkanen's grammar (§92.1) explains how to express the number of something that is expressed by a plural-only word. Numbers greater than one are expressed with bini, trini etc. but a single one ...
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6 votes
1 answer
111 views

The middle A of quadraginta

Consider these Latin cardinal numbers: quadrAginta, quinquAginta, sexAginta, nonAginta. The -ginta seems to stand for tens (cf. triginta, octoginta) and the initial parts quadr-, quinqu-, sex-, and ...
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8 votes
3 answers
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What is the correct Latin prefix for 'two-and-a-half-times'?

Question. What is the latin prefix for "2½ times" ? Remark. The question asks for the correct analogue of the prefix "sesqui-" which, of course, is the prefix for "1½ times".
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7 votes
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Expressing a number of years with a single word

An answer to an earlier question about age of wine introduced me to adjectives for specific ages in years. Similarly, there are nouns for periods of time in years. For example: bimus & biennium ...
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11 votes
1 answer
2k views

Do Roman numerals stand for something?

This may be an incredibly obvious question, but if so it's not immediately clear to me and probably deserves a question here. Two Roman numerals seem to have an obvious parallel to an existing word: ...
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5 votes
0 answers
251 views

Can Roman numerals stand for any kind of Latin numbers?

Latin has four classes of number words. Can Roman numerals (I, II, …) be used to for any class, or should they be restricted to, say, cardinals and ordinals? For example, can I abbreviate any ...
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10 votes
2 answers
354 views

How do I specify how many "litterae" or "castra" there are?

Certain words in Latin have a special meaning in the plural, which is often translated with the English singular. One obvious example of this is litterae, -arum, which means, "a letter." ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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What are the decimal and grouping marks in modern Latin?

To write non-integer numbers in the decimal system (without fractions), one needs a decimal mark. In English one uses the decimal point, but in many other languages one uses a comma instead. Wikipedia ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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Adverb for approximate numbers

In classical Latin, what is the best adverb for describing approximate numbers? If several work well, are there any differences? I mean saying things like "I have about ten euros". I would translate ...
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4 votes
1 answer
104 views

A counting poem or song

There are some traditional songs that are very repetitive and involve counting up or down. The only English example I know is "99 bottles of beer", and I know two in Finnish: "the elephant march" (...
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9 votes
3 answers
10k views

How did the Romans pronounce roman numerals?

As I understand it, their notation (subtractive notation?) is quite hard and tedious to work with even for its natives. In fact, many numbers are themselves math problems. How did they speak of their ...
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6 votes
2 answers
544 views

How did mille get so weird?

The word mille is weird. In singular it is — or can be considered — an indeclinable adjective, and the main word is declined according to the grammatical role. In plural it is a declinable ...
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10 votes
2 answers
4k views

Are "sex" and "sexus" etymologically related?

Are sex (the number 6) or sextus (⅙ or ordinal sixth)(From where the English word "sextant" comes.) and sexus (sex or gender) etymologically related?
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18 votes
1 answer
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Which Roman Numerals were used to express extremely large numbers in Classical Latin?

According to Wikipedia, there are two notable ways to render large numbers, reaching up to hundreds of thousands and higher: apostrophus and vinculum. The first uses a system of expanding rings, so ...
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