# English Ordinal Numerals

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**Ordinal Numerals:**

Here are some basic grammar rules for **ordinal numerals**:

** **

**Ordinal numerals** are used to express __the order __or __sequence of things__, such as **first, second, third**, etc.

In English, **ordinal numerals** are generally formed by adding the suffix **-th** to **the cardinal**** ****numeral** (except for

**first**__ , which has its own unique form__).

For **ordinal numerals** ending in **y,** the **y** is often changed to **i** before adding **-th.**

For **example**: ** twenty** becomes

**becomes**

__twentieth,____fifty__

__fiftieth.__

When using **ordinal numerals**, we generally add ** the** before the number to indicate that it is

**an ordinal**.

For **example**: **the third** house on the left or **the twentieth **century.

** **

**Ordinal numerals** can be used as both **adjectives **and **pronouns.**

__ ____As adjectives, __**they modify nouns (e.g.,** **the fourth** book).

** As pronouns,** they can stand alone to represent a number in a sequence (e.g.,

**the fourth,**or he came in

**third).**

### A table of **the ordinal numbers **from **1 **to** 1,000,000: **

Cardinal Number |
Ordinal Number |

1 |
1st (first) |

2 |
2nd (second) |

3 |
3rd (third) |

4 |
4th (fourth) |

5 |
5th (fifth) |

6 |
6th (sixth) |

7 |
7th (seventh) |

8 |
8th (eighth) |

9 |
9th (ninth) |

10 |
10th (tenth) |

11 |
11th (eleventh) |

12 |
12th (twelfth) |

13 |
13th (thirteenth) |

14 |
14th (fourteenth) |

15 |
15th (fifteenth) |

16 |
16th (sixteenth) |

17 |
17th (seventeenth) |

18 |
18th (eighteenth) |

19 |
19th (nineteenth) |

20 |
20th (twentieth) |

21 |
21st (twenty-first) |

22 |
22nd (twenty-second) |

23 |
23rd (twenty-third) |

24 |
24th (twenty-fourth) |

25 |
25th (twenty-fifth) |

26 |
26th (twenty-sixth) |

27 |
27th (twenty-seventh) |

28 |
28th (twenty-eighth) |

29 |
29th (twenty-ninth) |

30 |
30th (thirtieth) |

31 |
31st (thirty-first) |

32 |
32nd (thirty-second) |

33 |
33rd (thirty-third) |

34 |
34th (thirty-fourth) |

35 |
35th (thirty-fifth) |

36 |
36th (thirty-sixth) |

37 |
37th (thirty-seventh) |

38 |
38th (thirty-eighth) |

39 |
39th (thirty-ninth) |

40 |
40th (fortieth) |

50 |
50th (fiftieth) |

60 |
60th (sixtieth) |

70 |
70th (seventieth) |

80 |
80th (eightieth) |

90 |
90th (ninetieth) |

100 |
100th (hundredth) |

200 |
200th (two hundredth) |

300 |
300th (three hundredth) |

400 |
400th (four hundredth) |

500 |
500th (five hundredth) |

600 |
600th (six hundredth) |

700 |
700th (seven hundredth) |

800 |
800(eight hundredth) |

** **

**A table of ordinals from 101 to 1.000.0001,000,000th:**

Cardinal Number |
Ordinal Number |

101 |
101st (hundred and first) |

102 |
102nd (hundred and second) |

201 |
201st (two hundred and first) |

1000 |
1000th (thousandth) |

1001 |
1001st (thousand and first) |

1002 |
1002nd (thousand and second) |

1000000 |
1,000,000th (millionth) |

**Definite article The before ordinal n****umerals:**

The grammar rule for using **the definite article** ** the** before

**ordinal numbers**is as follows:

When referring to a specific **ordinal number** in a sequence or series, the definite article__ the__ is used before the

**ordinal number**.

For **example**: I’m studying for **the second** exam in the series. (referring to __a specific ordinal number__ in the sequence)

**The fifth** book in the series is my favorite. (referring to a __specific ordinal number__ in the sequence)

She finished in **third **place. (referring to __a specific__ __ordinal number__ in a race or competition)

However, when using **ordinal numbers** as general descriptions, __the definite article is not usually used____.__

For **example**, He’s in **first** grade this year. (referring to __a general__ __description__ of the grade level)

She’s celebrating her **50th** birthday next month. (referring __to a general description__ of the milestone)

**The formation of ordinal numerals:**

Here are some grammar rules related to __the formation of__ **ordinal numerals**:

To form **ordinal numerals** in English, the last two digits of the ** cardinal number** are changed

__to their ordinal form.__

For **example**: **1** becomes **st**

**2** becomes **nd**

**3 **becomes **rd**

and all others become **th**

For **numbers** that end in __1, 2, or 3, except for 11,__ __12, and 13,__

The corresponding suffixes are **st, nd,** and **rd,** respectively.

**For numbers** that end in ** 11, 12, or 13**, the corresponding suffix is

**th.**

** For all other numbers**, the corresponding suffix is

**th.**

For **example**:

**1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th**

**11th, 12th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th, 20th**

**21st, 22nd, 23rd, 24th, 25th, 26th, 27th, 28th, 29th, 30th**

**Suffixes for Ordinal Numbers:**

As for the suffixes used to form **ordinal numerals**, they are as follows:

**st** is used for numbers ending **in 1 (except for 11).**

**nd** is used for numbers ending **in 2 (except for 12).**

**rd** is used for numbers ending **in 3 (except for 13).**

**th** is used for __all other numbers.__

**Spelling change rules:**

Here are some **rules** **for spelling change** while forming **compound and simple ordinal numerals**:

For **compound ordinal numbers**

**(e.g., 21st, 22nd, 23rd),** the last digit is always used to form

**the ordinal ending,**

__ __** (e.g., 1st, 2nd, 3rd),** and the first digit is used to determine the first word

**in the ordinal**

**(e.g., twenty).**

When forming **simple ordinal numbers**

**(e.g., 1st, 2nd, 3rd),** the ending

**-y**is dropped from numbers ending in

**-ty (e.g. forty becomes fortieth).**

When forming **simple ordinal numbers** __(e.g., 1st, 2nd, 3rd),__

the endings **-one, -two, **and **-three** are shortened to ** -first, -second,** and

**respectively.**

*-third,*__(e.g., twenty-one becomes twenty-first).__

When forming **simple ordinal numbers** __(e.g., 1st, 2nd, 3rd),__

the endings **-fifth,** **-eighth,** and **-ninth** drop the **f,** **gh,** and **n,** respectively.

__(e.g., fifth becomes fifth, eighth becomes eighth, and ninth becomes ninth).__

When forming **simple ordinal numbers** __(e.g., 1st, 2nd, 3rd),__

the endings **-thousand,** **-million, **and **-billion** drop the **-d,** **-n,** and **-n, **respectively.

__(e.g., a thousand becomes a thousandth, million becomes a millionth, and a billion becomes a billionth).__

** ****Examples**:

**21st** **(twenty-first),** **22nd** **(twenty-second),** **23rd (twenty-third)**

** ****40th (fortieth),** **50th** **(fiftieth),** **60th (sixtieth)**

** ****21st (twenty-first), 32nd (thirty-second), 43rd (forty-third)**

** ****5th (fifth), 8th (eighth), 9th (ninth)**

** ****1000th (thousandth), 1,000,000th (millionth), **

**1,000,000,000th (billionth)**

**Here are some guidelines for using ordinal numerals with **__chapters, parts of books, paragraphs, and parts of plays__:

*:*

__chapters, parts of books, paragraphs, and parts of plays__* **Chapters***:** When referring to a specific chapter in a book, use **the ordinal numeral:** **(e.g., Chapter three** or **Chapter 3).**

* **Parts of books***:** When referring to a specific part of a book, use **the ordinal numeral:** **(e.g., Part two **or** Part 2).**

* **Paragraphs***:** When referring to a specific paragraph in a text, use **the ordinal numeral** **(e.g., Paragraph 4 **or** Paragraph Four).**

*Parts of plays***:** When referring to a specific part of a play, use **the ordinal numeral (e.g., Act 1, Scene 3, **or** Act One, Scene Three).**

**Here are some guidelines for using ordinal numerals with **__house numbers, rooms, train cars, shoe sizes, and clothing:__

__house numbers, rooms, train cars, shoe sizes, and clothing:__

** ***House numbers***:** When referring to a specific house number on a street, use **the ordinal numeral:** **(e.g., 123rd Street **or **123rd).**

* **Rooms***:** When referring to a specific room in a building, use **the ordinal numeral:** **(e.g., Room 301 **or **Room Three-Oh-One).**

* **Train cars***:** When referring to a specific train car, use **the ordinal numeral (e.g., Car 5 **or **Car Five).**

* **Boot sizes***:** When referring to the size of a pair of boots or shoes, use **the ordinal numeral** **(e.g., size 9 **or **size Nine).**

* **Clothing***:** When referring to clothing sizes, use **the ordinal** **numeral: (e.g., size small **or** size small).**

In general, **ordinal numerals** are used to indicate the order of items in a sequence, so they are useful for identifying specific items within a category, such as *a particular house* *on a street or a specific room in a building*.

Different countries and regions may use different systems. for sizing shoes and clothing, so it’s important to be aware.

of **local conventions and units of measurement.**

When referring to **dates of birth**, it is common to use **cardinal numbers** rather than **ordinal numbers**.

For **example**: you would say John was born **on December 15, 1990,** rather than John was born **on December 15th, 1990.**

However, when referring to **a person’s age, ****ordinal numbers are used.**

For **example**, John is celebrating his** 31st** birthday today.

Click here to learn more about English Ordinal Numerals

Click here to learn more about English Cardinal Numerals

Click here to learn more about What is a Numeral?