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Counting in Yiddish

Language overview

Forty-two in Yiddish Yiddish (יידיש), also known as Judaeo-German, is a High-German-derived language historically spoken by the Ashkenazi Jews. As such, it belongs to the West Germanic branch of the Indo-European family. Yiddish originated in Central Europe in the 9th century, influenced by Hebrew, Aramaic and Slavic languages on top of High-German vernacular dialect. Written in the Hebrew alphabet, it can also be written in the Latin alphabet. The about 2 million Yiddish speakers nowadays can be found in Ashkenazi communities in Ukraine, Israel, and the United States.

Yiddish numbers list

  • 1 – eyns (אײנס)
  • 2 – tsvey (צװײ)
  • 3 – dray (דרײַ)
  • 4 – fir (פֿיר)
  • 5 – finf (פֿינף)
  • 6 – zeks (זעקס)
  • 7 – zibn (זיבן)
  • 8 – akht (אכט)
  • 9 – nayn (נײַן)
  • 10 – tsen (צען)
  • 11 – elf (עלף)
  • 12 – tsvelf (צוועלף)
  • 13 – draytsn (דרײַצן)
  • 14 – fertsn (פערצן)
  • 15 – fuftsn (פופצן)
  • 16 – zekhtsn (זעכצן)
  • 17 – zibetsn (זיבעצן)
  • 18 – akhtsn (אַכצן)
  • 19 – nayntsn (נײַנצן)
  • 20 – tsvantsik (צוואַנציק)
  • 30 – draysik (דרײַסיק)
  • 40 – fertsik (פערציק)
  • 50 – fuftsik (פופציק)
  • 60 – zekhtsik (זעכציק)
  • 70 – zibetsik (זיבעציק)
  • 80 – akhtsik (אַכציק)
  • 90 – nayntsik (נײַנציק)
  • 100 – hundert (הונדערט)
  • 1,000 – toyznt (טויזנט)

Yiddish 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: nul (נול) [0], eyns (אײנס) [1], tsvey (צװײ) [2], dray (דרײַ) [3], fir (פֿיר) [4], finf (פֿינף) [5], zeks (זעקס) [6], zibn (זיבן) [7], akht (אכט) [8], nayn (נײַן) [9], tsen (צען) [10], elf (עלף) [11], and tsvelf (צוועלף) [12].
  • From thirteen to nineteen, the numbers are formed from the matching unit digits, adding a form of the word for ten (tsn, צן) at the end: draytsn (דרײַצן) [13], fertsn (פערצן) [14], fuftsn (פופצן) [15], zekhtsn (זעכציק) [16], zibetsn (זיבעצן) [17], akhtsn (אַכצן) [18], and nayntsn (נײַנצן) [19].
  • The tens are formed by adding the suffix tsik (ציק) at the end of the multiplier digit: tsen (צען) [10], tsvantsik (צוואַנציק) [20], draysik (דרײַסיק) [30], fertsik (פערציק) [40], fuftsik (פופציק) [50], zekhtsik (זעכציק) [60], zibetsik (זיבעציק) [70], akhtsik (אַכציק) [80], and nayntsik (נײַנציק) [90].
  • From twenty-one to ninety-nine, the tens and units are joined with the conjonction un / און (and) separated with spaces, the unit being said before the ten (e.g.: fir un fuftsik (פֿיר און פופציק) [54], akht un nayntsik (אכט און נײַנציק) [98]).
  • Hundreds are formed starting with the multiplier digit followed by the word for hundred (hundert, הונדערט), except for one hundred: hundert (הונדערט) [100], tsvey hundert (צװײ הונדערט) [200], dray hundert (דרײַ הונדערט) [300], fir hundert (פֿיר הונדערט) [400], finf hundert (פֿינף הונדערט) [500], zeks hundert (זעקס הונדערט) [600], zibn hundert (זיבן הונדערט) [700], akht hundert (אכט הונדערט) [800], and nayn hundert (הונדערט נײַן) [900].
  • Thousands are formed starting with the multiplier digit followed by the word for thousand (toyznt, טויזנט), except for one thousand: toyznt (טויזנט) [1,000], tsvey toyznt (צװײ טויזנט) [2,000], dray toyznt (דרײַ טויזנט) [3,000], fir toyznt (פֿיר טויזנט) [4,000], finf toyznt (פֿינף טויזנט) [5,000], zeks toyznt (זעקס טויזנט) [6,000], zibn toyznt (זיבן טויזנט) [7,000], akht toyznt (אכט טויזנט) [8,000], and nayn toyznt (טויזנט נײַן) [9,000].
  • The Yiddish big scale numbers above thousand are: milyon (מיליאָן) (106, million), bilyon (ביליאָן) (109, billion), trilyon (טריליאָן) (1012, trillion)…

Write a number in full in Yiddish

Let’s move now to the practice of the numbering rules in Yiddish. 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

Le Yiddish Le Yiddish
by , editors Assimil (2010)
[Amazon.com Amazon.com]

West Germanic languages

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

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