Did you know there are different types of numbers? Numbers are used to counting and order things. Depending on how they are used, they are known in different ways.
Taking about ordinal numbers, they are those that indicate the position that the elements occupy within an ordered series: first, second, third, etc. These numbers can be expressed in writing or in abbreviated form.
The abbreviation of ordinal numbers is formed with the number in cipher followed by the last two letters of the whole word. The tens, thousands, and the million are joined with a dash.
Ordinal numbers are useful because they have a lot of applications in everyday life. In English, ordinal numbers are used in the following situations:
To define the position of an element within a sequential order.
- Ex: Sarah goes first and Peter second.
- Ex: The person with the highest score will have the first position.
Kings and queens names are used before the ordinal number when spoken English
- Ex: Henry V – Henry the Fifth
- Ex: Elisabeth I- Elisabeth the First
To indicate a century and the floor of a building.
- Ex: Who is the best scientist of the 20th century?
- Ex: I live on the fourth floor.
To indicate the anniversary year of something or someone.
- Ex: It’s their twelfth wedding anniversary.
- Ex: Paola’s birthday is on 7th August.
On a specific date to indicate the specific day of a month.
- Ex: It’s the 5th of June.
List of Ordinal Numbers
The first three numbers have the endings -st, -nd, and -rd. The other numbers take the ending -th. Keep in mind that the tents ending in zero adopt the ending -ieth and the numbers that contain the unit 1, 2, 3 will retain the ending first, second, and third respectively.
- First – 1st
- Second – 2nd
- Third – 3rd
- Fourth – 4th
- Fifth – 5th
- Sixth – 6th
- Seventh- 7th
- Eighth – 8th
- Tenth- 9th
- ELeventh- 10th
- Twelfth – 12th
- Thirteenth- 13th
- Fourteenth – 14th
- Fifteenth – 15th
- Sixteenth – 16th
- Seventeenth- 17th
- Eighteenth- 18th
- Nineteenth – 19th
- Twentieth – 20th
- Twenty-first – 21st
- Twenty-second – 22nd
- Twenty-third – 23rd
- Twenty-fourth – 24th
- Thirtieth – 30th
- Thirty-first – 31st
- Thirty-second – 32nd
- Thirty-third- 33rd
- Thirty-fourth – 34th
- Fortieth – 40th
- Fiftieth – 50th
- Sixtieth – 60th
- Seventieth – 70th
- Eighth – 80th
- Ninetieth – 90th
- Hundredth – 100th
- Thousandth – 1000th
Ordinal Numbers vs. Cardinal Numbers
The main difference between the ordinal numbers and cardinal numbers is the use. A cardinal number is a number that how many of something there and the ordinal number is a number that tells the position of something in a list.
Therefore, ordinal numbers do not quantify the noun, like the cardinals, but rather identify and individualize it within an ordered set of elements of the same class.
Some examples of the use of cardinal numbers in English:
- Ex: She was born in 1998.
- Ex: I have three brothers.
To say your age
- Ex: I am twenty years old.
A phone number
- Ex: My phone number is 202-555-0130
In the case of ordinary numbers, they are used for dates, orders, names of kings and queens, anniversaries, and floors.
In short, cardinal numbers signify quantity whereas ordinal numbers signify order and position.