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Writing and Saying Large Numbers, by Dennis Oliver

Writing and Saying
Large Numbers (#1)

 

We don't normally write numbers with words, but it's possible
to do this--and of course this will show how we
say the numbers.

In writing large numbers, American English uses a comma ( , )
to separate thousands, millions, etc. American English also uses
a
hyphen ( - ) to separate "tens" words (twenty, fifty, etc.) and
"ones" words (one, three, six, etc.)

Examples:

Group 1
written   said
1,011   one thousand eleven
     
21,011   twenty-one thousand eleven
     
721,011   seven hundred twenty-one
thousand eleven

 

Group 2
written   said
1,256,721   one million two hundred fifty-six
thousand seven hundred twenty-one
     
31,256,721   thirty-one million two hundred
fifty-six thousand seven hundred
twenty-one
     
631,256,721   six hundred thirty-one million
two hundred fifty-six thousand
seven hundred twenty-one

 

Group 3
written   said
1,492,638,526   one billion four hundred ninety-two
million six hundred thirty-eight
thousand five hundred twenty-six
     
41,492,638,526   forty-one billion four hundred
ninety-two million six hundred
thirty-eight thousand five hundred
twenty-six
     
941,492,638,526   nine hundred forty-one billion
four hundred ninety-two million
six hundred thirty-eight thousand
five hundred twenty-six

 

__________________________________________________

 

Special Notes:

1.  

In American English, the order of large numbers is
thousand, million, billion, trillion, etc. (1,000; 1,000,000;
1,000,000,000; 1,000,000,000,000; etc.)

In American English a thousand million is a billion,
but in British English, a thousand million is a
milliard.

     
2.  

When saying large numbers, do not make thousand,
million, billion, trillion, etc. plural.

Not this:
*
twenty thousands dollars; *five millions people

But this:
twenty thousand dollars; five million people

     
3.  

In American English, use commas to separate
thousands, millions, etc.

Not this:

*21.011
*31.256.721
*941.492.638.526

But this:

21,011
31,256,721
941,492,638,526

     
4.  

People often say "a" instead of "one" before
hundred, thousand, etc. and they often add
"
and" before the last number:

a hundred and twenty-one

a thousand and eleven / etc.

 

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