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Chinese numbers are well-known for being simple and extremely rational. But the majority of people find them hard to learn, mainly due to the language barrier. If you want to learn Chinese numbers at your ease, stick to this article.
This article, particularly, will provide you a solid knowledge of counting in Chinese. It will lessen your confusion associated with learning Chinese and will boost your motivation to learn how to count in Chinese. Learning Chinese online is easy enough provided you get the right guidance with the right knowledge base.
Chinese numbers are simple to learn and they are the essential art of life. These numbers up to nine are all one syllable long and follow a set consistent pattern making it very easy to remember the entire sequence. But, as you move towards the higher numbers it becomes a little confusing because the Chinese have a diverse point of orientation than the Western language.
Chinese writing System is an interesting area to learn and explore. So let’s get started!
Chinese Numbers 1-10
The lower numbers in Chinese are very direct to learning and memorizing. Not only they are simple to learn, but the characters are also very easy to write and identify in the language due to having only one component in each of them. The basic Chinese numbers are formed of these 10 words and characters.
|two||二||èr / liǎng|
Chinese Numbers 11-99
The Chinese counting from 11 to 99 is also very easy to learn. There are no new characters here rather there is a set logical pattern to follow. They use only ten characters from 1 to 10 with a maximum of three characters per number.
The numbers from 11 to 19 are ten plus the number. For instance, ten-one means eleven, ten-two means twelve and ten-three means thirteen, and so on. From twenty onwards, it is the multiple of ten (10), plus (10), then the multiple of one (1). So twenty-one means, two ten-one. If the number ends at zero, it is just the two characters i.e. the multiple and the ten.
|twenty-one||二十一||èr shí yī|
|ninety-nine||九十九||jiǔ shí jiǔ|
The above pattern shows that it is not at all difficult to learn how to count in Chinese. All it requires is to memorize the pattern through which each number follows the other one.
Chinese Numbers 100’s and 1000’s
The hundreds and thousands in Chinese counting are less straightforward as compared to counting from 1 to 100, but they are still not very difficult to learn. The important thing to remember is the characters for hundreds and thousands. The character for “hundred” is 百 and the character for “thousand” is 千.
Points to remember for the 100’s and 1000’s in Chinese counting
零： The Chinese character for 0 is 零. It is pronounced as ‘ling’ in Chinese. It is, basically, used in such cases where there are one or more than one zeros (0) in the middle of any number as the placeholders.
It is only needed when there are other digits that are other than zero (0). So, 零 is only noticeable when it is in between two digits that are any numbers other than 0.
二/两: These two characters are used for 100s and 1000s in Chinese counting. For 200, it makes no apparent variance if you say 二百 or 两百. But for 2000, you must always use 两千.
|101||一百零一||yì bǎi líng yī|
|120||一百二十||yì bǎi èr shí|
|200||二百/两百||èr bǎi/ liǎng bǎi|
|201||二百零一/两百零一||èr bǎi/ liǎng bǎi líng yī|
|1001||一千零一||yì qiān líng yī|
Chinese Numbers 10,000 to 99,999,999
From the number of 10,000 Chinese numbers start to get complex. This is because of the reason that the Chinese language has a particular word and character to put “10,000”, which is 万.
This means that once you reach the point of 10,000 while counting Chinese numbers, you are required to start all over again. Let us make it easier for you. In the western language, we divide the big number into groups of three, as 10,000, but in Chinese, the big number is divided into a group of four instead of three, as 1, 0000.
So 100,000 becomes ten ten-thousands or 十万. And 1,000,000 is a hundred ten-thousands or 一百万.
Points to remember for the 10,000 and 99,999,999 in Chinese counting
零： The zero rule is precisely the same as it is in for the numbers till 100 which it should always come in between two digits.
一十: As explained earlier, the number ten itself is 十, but if it appears with or in between any bigger digit you should always use 一十 for clarity.
万 as a “separator’: 万 is used as a divider of two portions of the number. Whenever it appears, it acts as a ‘reset’ and you just need to start counting again from the top.
|10,001||一万零一||yī wàn líng yī|
|10,010||一万零一十||yī wàn líng yī shí|
|10,100||一万零一百||yī wàn líng yī bǎi|
|100,001||十万零一||shí wàn líng yī|
|100,101||十万零一百零一||shí wàn líng yī bǎi líng yī|
|1,000,000||一百万||yī bǎi wàn|
|1,000,001||一百万零一||yī bǎi wàn líng yī|
|1,001,000||一百万一千||yī bǎi wàn yī qiān|
|99,999,999||九千九百九十九万九千九百九十九||jiǔ qiān jiǔ bǎi jiǔ shí jiǔ wàn jiǔ qiān jiǔ bǎi jiǔ shí jiǔ|
How to learn the characters involved in Chinese number
We hope that the above-mentioned information is exciting enough for you to kick-start learning Chinese numbers. Many of you might be considering it very difficult to learn how to count in Chinese. But the good part is that it is not difficult at all. Rather, it is a bit logical.
If you are finding it hard to learn the characters, the good news is that there are not various characters to learn in the very first place. The few characters that you need to learn are very basic in nature.
In fact, the Chinese count up to Trillions just using 15 basic characters. If you are planning to learn Chinese characters it is very beneficial for you to start with the numbers so that you can get familiar with the shapes of the characters.
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Learning Chinese numbers is the need of the hour these days. It is one of the most well-known languages spoken by billions of people. It is easy to learn Chinese numbers if you follow the right guidelines just shared in this article. All you are required to do is to stick to it consistently. Keep practicing until you memorize the logic behind Chinese numbers.
With the information that you have just learned in this article, you must now be able to know about the main characters and numbers involved in Chinese counting. Once you get a grip on the numbers, you can move ahead to Chinese multiplication.
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