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Eugens

Senior Member
Argentina Spanish
Are there special rules for writing the numbers? Because I found this:

Now, this test will have about 30 questions. Should I have written 30 as a numeral, or written "thirty"?
1.never write numerals, always use the word
2.the rules are variable, but you got it right
3.you should have written 30 because it's <51
 
  • VenusEnvy

    Senior Member
    English, United States
    Eugens said:
    Are there special rules for writing the numbers? Because I found this:

    Now, this test will have about 30 questions. Should I have written 30 as a numeral, or written "thirty"?
    1.never write numerals, always use the word
    2.the rules are variable, but you got it right
    3.you should have written 30 because it's <51
    These look like reasons/explanations as to why you got them wrong.

    What were the questions, and what were your answers?? .....
     

    lauranazario

    Moderatrix
    Español puertorriqueño & US English
    Since this inquiry deals with English-language usage and grammar, I'll transfer this thread to the English-Only forum.
    LN
     

    Eugens

    Senior Member
    Argentina Spanish
    The question has three possible answers, the ones that are enumerated there, one of them is the correct one, the others are wrong.
    :)o sorry, I didn't realise that I have posted it in the wrong place)
     

    foxfirebrand

    Senior Member
    Southern AE greatly modified by a 1st-generation Scottish-American mother, and growing up abroad.
    I would say I spent ten minutes at 10 Downing Street. And played twenty questions while trying to drink an insipid 20-proof cordial without making a face. I don't think there's a real rule about this.

    It suits me to write out one-word numbers like fifteen and eighty, and enumerate numbers like 88 and 1500. If the cutoff point you learned was between nine and 10, a one-digit logic seems to be in effect. But a one-word logic works as well for me.

    I can't see "correcting" someone for spelling numbers that "should be" enumerated, or vice-versa.

    "His arrest record shows a hundred and twelve burglaries!" A stylistic choice for emphasis-- both the spelling out, the font change, and the insertion of the technically-incorrect and. Wrong, but creatively so.

    Yes, I said "both the" and then enumerated three things. Of such gaffes are Monty Python sketches born.
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    jess oh seven said:
    i was always taught only to write out numbers under 10, and to use the numerals for 10+.
    Me too - well not always - I found this rule long after I had passed through the teaching bit:eek:

    I think it is a "house rule" rather than an absolute language rule.

    Like jess07, I would always write in full numbers up to ten, or should that be up to 10 - I've forgotten:eek: Above that, I use numerals, except when it is simply daft - when the context really cries for twenty, thirty, forty.... or seventy-six (trombones).

    There are, of course, exceptions. I can't refer to Section one of the report. That has to be Section 1 (unless the report actually calls it Section One - could happen).

    Now, what was the question?
    Ah yes, I see.
    The really correct answer, in my opinion, is a variation of:
    2.the rules are variable, but you got it right

    "The rules are variable and because I don't know the rules for this examination-setting body I can't answer."
     

    Eugens

    Senior Member
    Argentina Spanish
    panjandrum said:
    "The rules are variable and because I don't know the rules for this examination-setting body I can't answer."
    Yes, panjandrum, I agree with you. And I think that the guy who made this test is super picky!:p
     

    LeeT911

    Member
    Canadian English/French
    Some things to keep in mind (at least, that I've learned)

    1) A number starting off a sentence should always be spelled out.

    2) When you have two numbers immediately follow one another, spell out one and use a numeral for the other. EX: 2 five-man teams

    3) When writing a technical document (product specifications or something of the sort where numbers occur frequently) it's generally acceptable to use numerals everywhere (except at the beginning of sentences).
     
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