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Kon nichi wa.
My name is Takanori Tomita.
I've been teaching Japanese on the interne since 2008.
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Learn how to count numbers in Japanese, and the logical part of Japanese language for numbering.

A lot of people know how to count Japanese numbers from 1 to 10.
However, numbers after 11 to 99 are not really recognized by Westerners.
So, today, you will learn Japanese numbers from 1 to 10 first, and secondly, you will learn how to count numbers from 11 to 99 in Japanese.

You can also watch my Japanese video lesson to listen to how a native Japanese people really pronounce numbers shown on this website.

Ok, let's start to learn how to count numbers 1 to 10 in Japanese.
Repeat after me.

Number

Japanese

Pronunciation

1
ichi
ee-chee
2
ni
nee
3
san
sahn
4
she
shee
5
go
goh
6
roku
roh-koo
7
shichi
shee-chee
8
hachi
hah-chee
9
kyu
kyoo
10
jyu
jooo

Now, let's learn how to count numbers after 11 to 99.
But, before learning how to speak those numbers in Japanese, you need to learn the logical part of Japanese language. To make any numbers from 11 to 99, you just combine the numbers 1 to 10.

For example, 11 is combined with the number of 10 and 1.
So, it is jyu ichi (jooo-ee-chee)
If it is 21, we combine the number of 2, 10, and 1.
So, it is ni, jyu, ichi (nee-jooo-ee-chee)
Can you undersand it? It is actually very easy!

 

Writing numbers in Japanese kanji will make it easier to understand the logical part of Japanese language.

If it is bit too hard to understand what I have just explained, please see the numbers written in Japanese kanji.

ichi roku
ni nana
8
4 9
5 10
1 - 5 numbers
6 - 10 numbers

As you can see above, those are numbers wirtten in Japanese kanji from 1 to 10.
So, as I explained, 11 is combined with the number of 10 and 1, we pick jyu and ichi kanji symbol

10ichi

21 is combined with 2, 10, and 1 kanji numbers.

ni10ichi

How's that?
Now, does it make sense to you?

 

Japanese Audio lessons
Luky and unlucky numbers in Japanese language

Finally, we would like to teach you about the lucky and unlucky numbers in Japanese language.

Unlike the Western culture, Japanese people consider 4 and 9 are unlucky numbers, and 7 is know as the most lucky number in Japanese. The reason why the number 4 is consider unlucky number is that 4 is pronunced as "shi", which is the same as the word of Death, and 9 is pronounced as "ku", which is considered as the meaning of "Kurushimu - surffering".

That's why we try to not use numbers either 4 or 9 in Japanese language.

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