Counting in German (cardinal and ordinal numbers)
How do you say the numbers in German?
In this chapter I will teach you how to count in German! We are starting with the numbers from 1-20 and, by end of this chapter, you should be able to count till 1000! Have fun!
Cardinal numbers in German
Numbers in German: 1-20
The numbers untill 12 are not following any system - same as in English. You just have to study and memorize them!
The numbers from 13 untill 19 are formed almost the same way as in English:
- In front of the number zehn (=ten), you have to put the corresponding number from one to nine
- Example: The number 13 is called dreizehn. If you pay attention, you can litterally see that dreizehn is the combination of drei (3) + zehn (10)
Listen to the numbers from 1 to 20 in a row: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20
Numbers in German up to 100
The numbers from 21 till 99 are build in a similar way as the numbers from 13 till 19.
- Example: The number 22 is called zweiundzwanzig. You are not starting as in English with the bigger number (in this case: zwanzig/twenty), but with the smaller number (in this case: zwei/two). The two numbers are connected with und (=and).
Listen to the numbers of the following list in one row: 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 40, 42, 50, 53, 60, 64, 70, 75, 80, 86, 90, 97, 100
Counting in German: 1-1000
Building the numbers with hundred, you just have to add the corresponding number to the number with hundred (without und).
- For example: 101 is called hunderteins, so first you have to put the hundred number and after that the rest of the numbers.
Listen to the numbers of the following list in one row: 101, 179, 200, 224, 300, 320, 400, 402, 500, 600, 700, 800, 900, 1000, 2000, 10000, 100000, 1000000
Ordinal numbers in German
There is also another form of numbers: the ordinal numbers. Forming them, there is a difference between the numbers from 1 to 19 and the numbers above:
- numbers from 1 to 19: add -te to the number
- numbers from above 19: add -ste to the number
In English you usually jsut add the ending -th, while in German you either add -te or -ste.
|Cardinal number||Ordinal number|
|eins (one)||erste (first)|
|zwei (two)||zweite (second)|
|drei (three)||dritte (third)|
|vier (four)||vierte (fourth)|
|fünf (five)||fünfte (fifth)|
|zehn (ten)||zehnte (tenth)|
|einundzwanzig (twentyone)||einundzwanzigste (twentyfirst)|
|vierunddreißig (thirtyfour)||vierunddreißigste (thirtyfourth)|
If you want to know more about ordinal numbers and especially their use as adjectives, have a look at the chapter about the forming and declension of ordinal numbers in German.
You want to do some fun an free exercises to learn the numbers in German? Than try out the following three exercises!
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