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numeric quantity expressions

Numeric quantity expressions are quantity expressions involving a specific number of things –

Partitive versions of these numeric quantity expressions are –

Numeric quantity expressions contrast with non-numeric, generic quantity expressions.


exact numeric quantities [+/-]

The most basic kind of numeric quantity expression expresses an exact numeric quantity, for example using a numeral –

  • Tha aon chù aig Màiri. ‘Mary has one dog.’
  • ... dà chù ... ‘... two dogs.’
  • ... trì coin ... ‘... three dogs.’
  • ...
  • ... deich coin ... ‘... ten dogs.’

Exact numeric quantities between 11 and 19 can be expressed by adding the numeric adjective deug ‘-teen’

  • Tha aon chù deug aig Màiri. ‘Mary has eleven dogs.’
  • ... dà chù dheug ... ‘... twelve dogs.’
  • ... trì coin dheug ... ‘... thirteen dogs.’
  • ...
  • ... naoi coin dheug ... ‘... nineteen dogs.’

For larger numeric quantities, we can use the numeric nouns –

  • Tha dusan cù aig Màiri. ‘Mary has a dozen dogs.’
  • ... fichead cù ... ‘... twenty dogs.’
  • ... ceud cù ... ‘... a hundred dogs.’

Multiples of numeric nouns can be expressed by combining them with the numerals –

  • Tha trì dusan cù aig Màiri. ‘Mary has three dozen dogs.’
  • ... dà fhichead cù ... ‘... forty dogs.’
  • ... ochd ceud cù ... ‘... eight hundred dogs.’

More complex examples involve conjoining numeric quantity expressions using agus, which is usually contracted to is or ’s

  • Tha fichead cù ’s a trì aig Màiri. ‘Mary has twenty-three dogs.’
  • ... fichead cù ’s a trì deug ... ‘... thirty-three dogs.’
  • ... ceithir fichead cù ’s a naoi deug ... ‘... ninety-nine dogs.’
  • ... naoi ceud deug cù, ceithir fichead ’s a naoi deug ... ‘... nineteen hundred and ninety-nine dogs.’