#1 Guide To Tamil Numbers: Guaranteed To Count Confidently!

Tamil Numbers_ling app_numbers

Learning numbers for kids is often straightforward. Start with a rhyme or song with a fantastic, catchy tune – and viola! They’ve got it. At least learning one to ten, or even one to twenty can be quickly done like that. But when learning numbers in a foreign language as an adult, you may need a different approach. Let’s try learning Tamil numbers together!

Numbers are called எண் En in Tamil. Tamils represent numbers similarly to Arabic numerals. The number system in Tamil Nadu is made up of two systems, which are cardinal and ordinal numbers. Other languages have their representation and different glyphs, of course, but in Tamil language, Tamil numerals are pronounced or named the way it is written. We will look into this at length as you read on.

Tamil Numbers_ling app_guy with calculator
Tamil Numbers – A Man With A Calculator

No Zero In Tamil Numbers

In the English Language, the number 234 is spelled and said as two hundred and thirty-four, but the Tamil system only requires you to spell and say ‘two, three, four.’ It is just the same way as it is written in numerals. Isn’t that fascinating? It certainly makes a lot of sense! Another example, 111 is spelled as one hundred and eleven. In Tamil, it is one one one.

Regarding zero, for the number 101, people worldwide never say one hundred, zero, and one when writing this number down. They always say one hundred and one. So, the question is – why the need for the number ‘zero’ in the first place? In the old Tamil language, people agreed there was no need for it. They did not have a zero, and the word for zero was பாழ் andru. The meaning of this is nonothing or waste.

Modern Tamil decided to adapt the Hindi meaning of the word शून्य Shunya, or nothingness. Today, zero is சுழியம் Suliyam in Tamil and is represented as “0” borrowed from HindiStill, we all know that zero is necessary. How else would we write 10, 20, 30, 300, 3000, and so on? Let’s look in detail at how these are represented in Tamil numbers.

A List Of Tamil Numbers

For the numbers that are in tens, the words for “ten” will be used. Here are the numerals now for you to take a look at:

Arabic Number SystemTamil Glyph/SymbolTamil Number SpellingPronunciationSound
0 0 சுழியம்Suliyam
1 ஒன்று Oḷṟu
2 இரண்டு Iraṇṭu
3 மூன்று Mūṉṟu
4 நான்கு Nāṉku
5 ஐந்து Aintu
6 ஆறு āṟu
7 ஏழு ēḻu
8 எட்டு Eṭṭu
9 ஒன்பது Oṉpatu
10 பத்து Pattu
11 ௰௧ பதினொன்றுPatiṉoḷṟu
12 ௰௨ பன்னிரண்டு Paṉṉiraṇṭu
13 ௰௩பதின்மூன்று Patiṉmūṉṟu
14 ௰௪ பதினான்கு Patiṉāṉku
15 ௰௫ பதினைந்து Patiṉaintu
16 ௰௬ பதினாறு Patiṉāṟu
17 ௰௭ பதினேழு Patiṉēḻu
18 ௰௮ பதினெட்டு Patiṉeṭṭu
19 ௰௯ பத்தொன்பது Pattoṉpatu
20 ௨௰இருபது Irupatu
30 ௩௰ முப்பது Muppatu
40 ௪௰ நாற்பது Nāṟpatu
50 ௫௰ ஐம்பது Aimpatu
60 ௬௰ அறுபது Aṟupatu
70 ௭௰ எழுபது Eḻupatu
80 ௮௰ எண்பது Eṇpatu
90 ௯௰ தொன்னூறுToṉṉūṟu
100 நூறு Nūṟu
1000 ஆயிரம் āyiram
100,000 ௱௲ இலட்சம் Lațcam
1,000,000 ௲௲ பத்துஇலட்சம்Pattu lațcam

Looking at the digits and corresponding symbols in Tamil numerals, you can begin understanding the system that Tamil people follow. The Tamil region’s unique numeric style is reasonably practical and exciting. It would definitely give people that enjoy numbers a real kick!

Elaborating on what we have just seen from the list, taking the number 123 as an example, the placement of 1 is in hundreds, 2 is tens, and 3 is ones. This is how it will be written in Tamil: ௧௱௨௰௩.

It can be mathematically represented as 1 x 100 + 2 x 10 + 3.

Yes, of course, it is a bit surprising at first. It is what makes the Tamil language a genuinely classic one. Practice a few numbers and write what you think in the comments section!

Tamil Numbers_ling app_learn tamil_counting with fingers
Tamil Numbers – A Lady Counting

Wrapping Up Tamil Numbers

The list above represents numbers in the cardinal form. The ordinal numbers in Tamil usually have the suffix “am” except for the first one. Take a look below:

Ordinal NumberTamilPronunciationSound
1st முதல் Mudhal
2nd இரண்டாம் Irandām
3rd மூன்றாம் Mūnṟām
4th நான்காம் Nānkām
5th ஐந்தாம் Aintām
6th ஆறாம் āṟām
7th ஏழாம் ēḻām
8th எட்டாம் Eṭṭām
9th ஒன்பதாம் Oṉpatām
10thபத்தாம் Pattām

Common fractions in Tamil are shown as this:

1/2 அரை Arai
1/4 கால் Kal
3/4 முக்கால் Mukkal
1/8 அரைக்கால் Araikkal
1/5 நாலுமா Naluma
1/10 இருமா Irumā
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Based on the article, I hope you find the Tamil numbers easier to handle. It certainly is different from English but is also similar in many ways. The symbol of numbers will need to be written and practiced a few times. The transliterated numbers can be memorized even through a song.

Want to take your language-learning journey a step further? Master Tamil today using Ling! The Ling app is a gamified app with lessons for daily words and expressions that’ll help you express yourself better. We’re not saying that this is just a flashcard-type of app! We literally mean that it can be your one and only resource for learning Tamil and 60+ other languages.

For Tamil, you will learn writing, listening, speaking, and reading, along with pronunciation and accent – all of these are free! Yes, the lessons are all accessible at Ling! We understand that language learning can be daunting, and we also know that people have jobs, places to go, and things to keep up with. That’s why Ling makes sure to squeeze in a lot of information so that you can learn something new just by using the app for 15 minutes daily.

Let Ling be your constant companion, helping you to learn and with you always on your phone. Download the app today and start a beautiful journey to Tamil Nadu.

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