View Full Version : Ever wondered about 11 and 12?

18th May 2000, 16:17
The names for 11 and 12, namely, eleven and twelve, have always been a source of curiousity for me. I know that in some languages, these follow a pattern that fit more closely with the rest of the number system. In English, however, they don't. I've thought of a number of ways to remedy this, and the most interesting one I've thought of so far is to change the word for 1. The names for the numbers 10-19 ought to follow the same scheme as all the rest, such as 20-29. However, onety sounds to similar, and is likely to cause confusion. To alleviate this, a slight change I think is in order. One should become fun. This then allows 10 to be funny. 11 would then be funny-fun. The advantages of this would be numerous. The stigma of being single would be alleviated drastically, as 1 is now "fun." It would also make it much more enjoyable for young kids to learn to count to 10. Would you rather know your funny times tables or your ten times tables? It would also solve the problem of the numbers 11 and 12 making no sense at all, and 13-19 making only marginal sense, when compared to the names of the rest of the numbers.

18th May 2000, 16:44
WHAT are you smoking? And why aren't you sharing it??


18th May 2000, 18:02
Actually, I was eating Chinese food....

18th May 2000, 19:37
It would be very unusual for that to include cheese.

19th May 2000, 01:49
It'll be the kung POW that did it...

19th May 2000, 03:17
there is no such thing as a bad acid trip, well i might take that back after reading this

19th May 2000, 05:25
whoa dude,
I need to take a nap after reading that http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/frown.gif

19th May 2000, 06:54
I think the number naming has something to do with the English system of measurements.

19th May 2000, 06:58
somone with far to much time on their hands!

19th May 2000, 07:04
but at least you can spell!

19th May 2000, 08:19
Oneteen and twoteen, or even firstteen and seconteen (omitting the d is clearer http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/wink.gif) doesn't sound right http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/frown.gif

19th May 2000, 09:15
Sigh, I tried to tell him he was on crack whe he informed me of this idea. (Elyas lives just down the hall from me) But would he listen?


And you all don't have to deal with him daily! This is just the latest of his ridiculous ideas! Although I think this is the stupidest one he has come up with yet... well, this or his idea to walk across the US, buy a Harley and bike back.

I tell you, this boy is completely and totally INSANE!!!! (of course I can't be to far from the same since I haven't got the good sense to stop hanging out with him http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/wink.gif )

19th May 2000, 09:16
No - as 13 is thir-teen (from third-teen) and the others are similar (four-teen from fourth-teen), 11 and 12 would be first-teen and second-teen which also doesn't work.


"Life is what we make of it, yet most of us just fake"

19th May 2000, 09:40
Is there anyone from foriegn locales/who speaks multiple languages that could let us know what 11 and 12 are in other languages, and whether or not it makes sense in yours?

19th May 2000, 09:45
and yes, I know cracksmoker err... Elyas IRL. And yes, he explained this theory to me... and yes, my head is still spinning, and yes, he has plenty more 'good' ideas where that came from...


If you can't convince them, confuse them

19th May 2000, 10:38
we should send him to congress.

(maybe he can help)

19th May 2000, 11:21
Going to congress could be fun. I could try to get them to eliminate time as well. Although time is more enjoyable now that 11:11 is funny-fun funny-fun...

19th May 2000, 12:29
I have always said that Finnish should become THE World language, our numbers are logical:

1 - yksi
2 - kaksi
3 - kolme
11 - yksitoista
12 - kaksitoista
13 - kolmetoista

Not to mention the fact that you don't have to figure out how to pronounce our words - once you have seen them written, you just read every letter and it's there.

(Danish numerals - forget any logic http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/wink.gif)

19th May 2000, 13:06
Do you know what language family Finnish is in? I remember hearing that it is fairly unique, at least as compared to the other Scandinavian languages. French and German also don't seem to be to good with 11 and 12, although they are better than English is

19th May 2000, 13:53
Finnish is an Indo-Chinese dialect, if I remember correctly.

19th May 2000, 14:00
Try understanding 80 in French, "quatre vingt" (or something like that)that should translate into "four twenty" and if you put beside it a 19 you get "quatre vingt dix neuf" (I might've spelled wrong the 10 there) "four twenty ten nine", that meaning 99.

(if some french or canadian people are out there please correct me)

[This message has been edited by Aurel (edited 19 May 2000).]

19th May 2000, 15:05
Perti, I pride myself in speaking 3 languages fluently, and being able to understand another 3, but if you think that those numbers are any easier, thank god I dont live where you do.

BTW, I think Mr. Cracksmocker has a good idea going.

Of course, it helps that I am stoned at the moment.....

19th May 2000, 15:36

Finnish belongs to Finno-Ugric languages, which is rather small language family.

(note what they say "Finnish is systematic and LOGICAL" http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/wink.gif)

Genom, if you did live here, it would make perfect sense http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/biggrin.gif

19th May 2000, 15:53
Perti-Thanks for the info on the Finnish language, I just followed the link. I have a CD or two of Finnish folk/rock type music. Very unusual sounding language. A guy I work with was convinced that it was Japanese(he was from the Philipines).
Genom-The point isn't that the numbers are necessarily any easier, but that they are consistent. Odds are, if we knew the words for 4 or 5, or 14 or 15, we would be able to derive the other. The same is decidedly not true in English, French, or German

19th May 2000, 21:39
I love threads like this! http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif MSG delerium or not, Elyas should be commended for posting it.

I think English's many idiocyncracies are part of its strength. How did this little island nation off the coast of Europe produce such a canon of literature.

And despite it's many idiocyncracies, it's pretty rational as far as languages go. A less rational language would hinder the flow of commerce. http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif


19th May 2000, 22:55
Etymology: Middle English enleven, from enleven, adjective, from Old English endleofan, from end- (alteration of An one) + -leofan; akin to Old English lEon to lend -- more at ONE, LOAN
Date: before 12th century

Etymology: Middle English, from Old English twelf; akin to Old High German zwelif twelve, Old English twA two, -leofan (as in endleofan eleven) -- more at TWO, ELEVEN
Date: before 12th century

Makes sense (sort of). http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif


[This message has been edited by paulcs (edited 20 May 2000).]

20th May 2000, 09:04
Reading the above and High German thing, you could be speaking Dutch http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/wink.gif

11 = elf
12 = twaalf


The Rock
20th May 2000, 17:29
I think english people wrote the language that way so that it would be a pain in the ass to translate into other languages. We english are just a pain to other nationalities. http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif

The Rock
www.3dforce.com (http://www.3dforce.com)

20th May 2000, 18:56
Japanese seem to have it more organized, I don't speak the language but I learned a little of it and the number system but it's been like 9 years since i've done this stuff. But here goes http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif
1 = itchi
2 = ni
11 = juu-itchi
12 = juu-ni
20 = ni-juu
21 = ni-juu-itchi

Well maybe not all that clear since they put the 'juu' at the begging for number 11 thru 19 and then at the end for 20 to 99.