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Numbers in Dutch (Nederlands)

Information about counting in Dutch written by Dirk Bakker.

Numeral Cardinal IPA Ordinal IPA
1 één [e:n] eerst(e) ['I:r.stə]
2 twee [tυe:] tweede ['tυe:.də]
3 drie [dri:] derde ['dεr.də]
4 vier [vi:r] vierde ['vi:r.də]
5 vijf [vεIf] vijfde ['vεIf.də]
6 zes [zεs] zesde [zεs.də]
7 zeven ['ze:.vən] zevende ['ze:.vən.də]
8 acht [axt] achtste ['axt.stə]
9 negen ['ne:.γən] negende ['ne:.γən.də]
10 tien [ti:n] tiende ['tin.də]
11 elf [εlf] elfde ['ε]
12 twaalf [tυa:lf] twaalfde ['tυa:lf.də]
13 dertien ['dεr.tin] dertiende ['dεr.tin.də]
14 veertien ['vI:r.tin] veertiende ['vI:r.tin.də]
15 vijftien ['vεIf.tin] vijftiende ['vεIf.tin.də]
16 zestien ['zεs.tin] zestiende ['zεs.tin.də]
17 zeventien ['ze:.vən.tin] zeventiende ['ze:.vən.tin.də]
18 achttien ['ax(t).tin] achttiende ['ax.tin.də]
19 negentien ['ne:.γən.tin] negentiende ['ne:.γən.tin.də]
20 twintig ['tυIn.təx] twintigste ['tυIn.təx.stə]
Numeral Cardinal IPA Ordinal
21 eenentwintig [e:n.ən.'tυIn.təx] (-ste from here on)
22 tweeëntwintig [tυe:.ən.'tυIn.təx]
23 drieëntwintig4 [dri.ən.'tυIn.təx]
24 vierentwintig [vi:r.ən.'tυIn.təx]
25 vijfentwintig [vεIf.ən.'tυIn.təx]
26 zesentwintig [zεs.ən.'tυIn.təx]
27 zevenentwintig [ze:.vən.ən.'tυIn.təx]
28 achtentwintig [axt.ən.'tυIn.təx]
29 negenentwintig [ne:.γən.ən.'tυIn.təx]
30 dertig ['dεr.təx]
40 veertig ['vI:r.təx]
50 vijftig ['vεIf.təx]
60 zestig ['zεs.təx]
70 zeventig ['ze:.vən.təx]
80 tachtig ['tax.təx]
90 negentig ['ne:.γən.təx]
100 honderd ['hon.dərt]
1,000 duizend ['dœy.zənt]
10,000 tienduizend [tin.'dœy.zənt]
100,000 honderdduizend [hon.dərt.'dœy.zənt]4
1,000,000 (een) miljoen [mIl.'jun]
109 (een) miljard [mIl.'jαrt]
1012 (een) biljoen [bIl.'jun]
1015 (een) biljard [bIl.'jαrt]
1018 (een) triljoen [trIl.'jun]
1021 (een) triljard [trIl.'jαrt]

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  1. The accents in één are optional, but are usually employed to avoid confusion with the indefinite article een [ən] (which is, of course, the same word etymologically).
  2. The pronunciations given are the Netherlands Dutch standard. Small regional varieties do occur, such as the insertion of [ə] in the pronunciation of tachtig ['taxətəx] by some speakers of Flemish Dutch.
  3. The main stress may lie either on the unit or on the ten, depending on the context.
  4. The dots on the ë (called trema) are used in Dutch to separate clashing vowels.
  5. As in note 3, above, the stress may lie on the first or second element, depending on context.

Some remarks

Units are combined with tens by means of -en- [ən] or [εn] ‘and’, in reverse order compared to English: twintig + vier = vierentwintig. The higher powers of ten, however, are added in ‘normal’ order, and with optional use of -en-: honderd + negen = honderd(en)negen, achthonderd + zestig + twee = achthonderd(en)tweeënzestig; zesduizend + dertig + negen = zesduizend(en)negenendertig; etc.

Complex numbers between 10 and 99 are typically written as one word, higher ones will usually get a space or two for clarity’s sake: vierduizendachthonderd(en)éénentwintig becomes vierduizend achthonderd (en) éénentwintig.

Numbers like 6,200 can be pronounced in two different ways: either as tweeënzestighonderd (‘sixty-two hundred’) or as zesduizend tweehonderd (‘six thousand two hundred’). The same goes when these numbers also contain tens and / or units: 3,266 tweeëndertighonderd zesenzestig or drieduizend tweehonderd zesenzestig.

When indicating years, the word honderd may be left out, as in English: 1999 negentienhonderd negenennegentig or negentien negenennegentig. No such practice has developed yet for the year 2000 and upwards: this might change in the future, but at present people usually say tweeduizend acht for 2008. The pronunciation *twintig acht, although it is sometimes used, still sounds a bit awkward.

Ordinals are formed with –de or –ste.

Honderd and duizend are never preceded by an indefinite article as in English, but miljoen, miljard etc. typically are.

Mind the irregular cardinals dertien / -tig (not *drietien / -tig), veertien (not *viertien / -tig), tachtig (not *achttig), and the ordinals eerste (not *eende or *eenste) and derde (not *driede).

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