All Slavic languages: reading decimal numbers

Discussion in 'Other Slavic Languages' started by Encolpius, Nov 9, 2013.

  1. Encolpius

    Encolpius Senior Member

    Praha (Prague)
    magyar (Hungarian)
    Hello, I wonder how you read decimal numbers in your language.
    I am afraid only Czech and Slovak uses a very unique reading I haven't encountered in other languages except my mother tongue, so I wonder what origin it is if it is used in other Slavic languages, too. I am mostly interested in the unique word "celý (whole)"....

    0,6 -- žádná/nula celá šest desetin [lit.: zero whole six tenth]
    1,06 -- jedna celá šest setin [lit.: one whole six hundredth]
    2,6 -- dvě celé šest desetin [lit.: two wholes six tenth]
    5,6 -- pět celých šest desetin [lit.: five wholes six tenth]

    So you can see the word celý (whole) is declined according to the Czech grammar rules, tenth or hundredth is nothing especial it exists in most languages. In common language the tenth or hundreth is left out.

    Do you use the word celý (whole)????????

  2. Azori

    Azori Senior Member

    In Slovak it would be:

    0,6 -- nula celých šesť desatín
    1,06 -- jedna celá šesť stotín
    2,6 -- dve celé šesť desatín
    5,6 -- päť celých šesť desatín

    The words desatina (tenth), stotina (hundredth) etc. are usually omitted in colloquial language. The adjective celý isn't always declined as it should be so one can hear "nula celých šesť" as well as "nula celá šesť" or "nula celé šesť"...
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2013
  3. Arath Senior Member

    In Bulgarian there is a short (more commonly used) and a long way of reading decimal numbers:

    0,6 - нула цяло и шест/нула цяло и шест десети - nula cjalo i šest/nula cjalo i šest deseti - zero whole and six/zero whole and six tenths
    1,06 - едно цяло нула шест/едно цяло и шест стотни - edno cjalo nula šest/edno cjalo i šest stotni - one whole zero six/one whole and six hundredths
    1,006 - едно цяло нула нула шест/едно цяло и шест хилядни - edno cjalo nula nula šest/edno cjalo i šest hiljadni - one whole zero zero six/one whole and six thousandths.
    2,6 - две цяло и шест/две цяло и шест десети - dve cjalo i šest/dve cjalo i šest deseti - two whole and six/two whole and six tenths
  4. Roman A Member

    Ukrаiniаn 0,6-нуль цiлих i шiсть десятих(slovаk trаns: nuľ cilych i šisť desjatych) 1.06-одна цiла i шiсть сотих(odnа cilа i šisť sotych), 1.6-одна цiла i шiсть десятих(odna cila i šisť desjatych), 2.6-два цiлих i шiсть десятих(dvа cilych i šisť desjatych), 5.6-п'ять цілих i шість десятих(p'jať cilych i šisť desjatych)
  5. marco_2 Senior Member


    0,6 - sześć dziesiątych or in colloquial speech zero przecinek sześć (= nought comma six)
    1,06 - jedna cała i sześć setnych or jeden przecinek / i sześć setnych
    2,6 - dwie całe i sześć dziesiątych or dwa przecinek sześć
    5,6 - pięć całych i sześć dziesiątych or pięć przecinek sześć
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2013
  6. bibax Senior Member

    Czech (Prague)
    The origin is Latin, of course.

    If you are interested, in Czech the adjective celá (fem. form) stands for celá část (desetinného čísla). In Latin nulla (also fem. form) means žádná, nulla pars integra = žádná celá část.
  7. oveka Senior Member

    Ukraine, Ukrainian
    It is possible and so:
    0,6-нуль цiлих i шiсть десятих
    1.06-одна цiла i шiсть сотих
    1.6-одна цiла й шiсть
    2.6-дві й шiсть
    2.43-дві, сорок три
    5.6-п'ять i шість
  8. Encolpius

    Encolpius Senior Member

    Praha (Prague)
    magyar (Hungarian)
    Wow, that's really fantastic that the word "celý" is used in many Slavic languages....I am really surprised...I wonder if Russian and BCS use them, too....
  9. learnerr Senior Member

    Russian does. 6,1 = «шесть целых одна десятая»
  10. itreius Senior Member

    Yes, it's used here as well.

    0,6 - nula cijelih/cijelo (i) šest (desetina)
    1,06 - jedno cijelih/cijelo (i) šest (stotinki)
    2,6 - dva cijelih/cijelo (i) šest (desetina)
    5,6 - pet cijelih/cijelo (i) šest (desetina)

    Alternatively, one could use zarez instead of cijelo/cijelih. Zarez means comma.
  11. Encolpius

    Encolpius Senior Member

    Praha (Prague)
    magyar (Hungarian)
    Thank you all, so we can say it is a pan-Slavic grammatical phenomenon....I think we have it from a Slavic language...but it would be interesting to know if it is used in other less common European languages....
  12. francisgranada Senior Member

    I don't think the Hungarian "system" necessarilly comes from the Slavic, rather both the Slavic and Hungarian come from Latin (#6).
    I don't know what's the situation in the less common languages, but the construction with "celý" is possible also in some other laguages as well, e.g. in Spanish "t
    res enteros setenta y cinco centésimas" (3,75), though "tres coma setenta y cinco" is more common in the spoken language. The full Spanish form could be: tres números enteros y 75 partes centésimas.

    I'm even not sure whether we can speak of a common Slavic construction ... It's more probable that they are independent calques of Latin (I don't think the Slavs used decimal numbers in e.g. the 5th o 6th centuries).
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2013
  13. Thomas1

    Thomas1 Senior Member

    polszczyzna warszawska
    Something interesting on the origin of decimal fractions:
    In discussing the origins of decimal fractions, Dirk Jan Struik states:[18]
    "The introduction of decimal fractions as a common computational practice can be dated back to the Flemish pamphlet De Thiende, published at Leyden in 1585, together with a French translation, La Disme, by the Flemish mathematician Simon Stevin (1548-1620), then settled in the Northern Netherlands. It is true that decimal fractions were used by the Chinese many centuries before Stevin and that the Persian astronomer Al-Kāshī used both decimal and sexagesimal fractions with great ease in his Key to arithmetic (Samarkand, early fifteenth century)."[19]

    While the Persian mathematician Jamshīd al-Kāshī claimed to have discovered decimal fractions himself in the 15th century, J. Lennart Berggren notes that he was mistaken, as decimal fractions were first used five centuries before him by the Baghdadi mathematician Abu'l-Hasan al-Uqlidisi as early as the 10th century.


  14. Vanja Senior Member

    In Serbian there's no "whole", it would sound ridiculous. "Whole" (celo/cela) could be used when talking about fractions (in maths). "Desetina", "stotina" is not wildly or not at all used after "comma".

    So there' s not much of a philosophy here:

    0,6 - nula zarez šest
    (600 - šesto/ šest stotina)
    1,06 - jedan zarez nula šest
    (jedan minut i šest stotinki - only used with a measure, in this example, measure of time)
    2,6 - dva zarez šest
    5,6 - pet zarez šest
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2013
  15. learnerr Senior Member

    I'd add here that in Russian the shortcut way of pronouncing numbers written this way also exists, but it is used only when spoken. The difference is, we never read aloud the comma; someone reading it aloud would sound clumsy, and he or she would appear to be starting another number anyway.
    But 4,28 is a fraction. This fact just gets obscured by the notation. ;-)

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