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Counting in Pennsylvania German

Language overview

Forty-two in Pennsylvania German Pennsylvania German (Pennsilfaanisch-Deitsch, Pennsilfaani-Deitsch), also known as Pennsylvania Dutch, is a West Germanic language of the Indo-European family, of the High German group. Mostly spoken nowadays by the Old Order Amish and Mennonite communities in the United States (Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Indiana) and in Canada (Ontario), it counts about 300,000 speakers.

Pennsylvania German numbers list

  • 1 – eens
  • 2 – zwee
  • 3 – drei
  • 4 – vier
  • 5 – fimf
  • 6 – sex
  • 7 – siwwe
  • 8 – acht
  • 9 – nein
  • 10 – zehe
  • 11 – elf
  • 12 – zwelf
  • 13 – dreizeh
  • 14 – vazeh
  • 15 – fuffzeh
  • 16 – sechzeh
  • 17 – siwwezeh
  • 18 – achtzeh
  • 19 – neinzeh
  • 20 – zwansich
  • 30 – dreissich
  • 40 – vazich
  • 50 – fuffzich
  • 60 – sechzich
  • 70 – siwwezich
  • 80 – achtzich
  • 90 – neinzich
  • 100 – en hunnert
  • 1,000 – en dausend
  • one million – en millyon

Pennsylvania German numbering rules

Now that you’ve had a gist of the most useful numbers, let’s move to the writing rules for the tens, the compound numbers, and why not the hundreds, the thousands and beyond (if possible).

  • Digits and numbers from zero to twelve are specific words: null [0], eens [1], zwee [2], drei [3], vier [4], fimf [5], sex [6], siwwe [7], acht [8], nein [9], zehe [10], elf [11], and zwelf [12].
  • From thirteen to nineteen, the numbers are formed from the matching digits, adding the shortened word for ten (zeh) at the end, with some exceptions: dreizeh [13], vazeh [14] (and not vierzeh), fuffzeh [15] (and not fimfzeh), sechzeh [16], siwwezeh [17], achtzeh [18], and neinzeh [19].
  • The tens are formed by adding the suffix -sich/-zich at the end of the multiplier digit, with the exception of ten and twenty: zehe [10], zwansich [20], dreissich [30], vazich [40], fuffzich [50], sechzich [60], siwwezich [70], achtzich [80], and neinzich [90].
  • From twenty-one to ninety-nine, the tens and units are joined with the un (and) word with no space, but the unit is said before the ten (e.g.: eenundreissich [31], fimfundreissich [35]).
  • The unit eens (one) loses its final -s when composed in a number, unless it is the only value after a scale name (e.g.: en hunnert un eens [101], en dausend eens [1,001]).
  • Hundred (hunnert), thousand (dausend), and million (millyon) are formed by saying the multiplier digit first, then the scale name separated with a space (e.g.: en hunnert [100], zwee hunnert [200], drei dausend [3,000], vier dausend [4,000], fimf millyon [5 million]). When the multiplier is one, eens becomes en with only one e (e.g.: en dausend [1,000], en millyon [one million]). When a hundred is directly followed by a unit, the coordinating word un reappears, whereas it is not used with compound numbers (e.g.: en hunnert un siwwe [107], nein hunnert neinunneinzich [999], en dausend nein hunnert neinunsiwwezich [1,979]).

Write a number in full in Pennsylvania German

Let’s move now to the practice of the numbering rules in Pennsylvania German. Will you guess how to write a number in full? Enter a number and try to write it down in your head, or maybe on a piece of paper, before displaying the result.

Books

A Pennsylvania German Reader and Grammar A Pennsylvania German Reader and Grammar
by , editors Pennsylvania State University Press (1978)
[Amazon.com Amazon.com]

West Germanic languages

Afrikaans, Alsatian, Bavarian, English, German, Luxembourgish, North Frisian, Pennsylvania German, Plautdietsch, Saterland Frisian, Swiss German, West Frisian, and Wymysorys.

Other supported languages

As the other currently supported languages are too numerous to list extensively here, please select a language from the full list of supported languages.

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