use of plural when counting things

Doug R

Member
English - Canada
When counting things, such as "five dogs", "twenty five dollars" "one hundred years", is there a rule that governs whether you add a plural ending to the noun
(ים or ות)?

I ask this because I was surprised to hear "twenty five dollars" translated as "עשרים וחמישה דולר" instead of "עשרים וחמישה דולרים"
 
  • slus

    Senior Member
    Hebrew - Israel
    Hi,
    There's a rule saying that numbers 2-9 should always be followed by the plural form and numbers 10 and above can either be followed by the singular or plural form. The use of singular is older-fashioned and is considered higher resister.
     

    Drink

    Senior Member
    English - New England, Russian - Moscow
    For things like currencies and measurements, it is common in colloquial Hebrew to use the singular, regardless of whether the number is above 10 or not. This is also often but not always accompanied by the use of feminine numbers regardless of the gender of the currency/measurement.

    I still have a vivid memory from years ago of buying a cucumber at a store and the cashier telling me in a memorable voice "חמש שקל".

    (This contributes to the general misconception that Israelis misuse genders of numbers, when really it's specific to cases like this.)
     
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