Turkish Numbers: Cardinal, Ordinal, and Their Pronunciations

turkish numbersThe Turkish language is spoken by over 63 million, in Turkey and spread across various Eastern European and Central Asian countries from Germany to Greece, and more. If you’re new to Turkish, learning to count is a great beginner level lesson. In this guide, we’ll go over the cardinal Turkish numbers from zero to twenty, and all the key numbers up to one million, then examine how ordinal numbers work in Turkish when it comes to the appropriate suffixes. Check out this guide on how to memorize the vocabulary of any language for some useful memorization tips.

Turkish Numbers: Cardinal

Cardinal numbers are numbers like one, two, and three. They’re representations of natural numbers, and used to denote an amount. Below you’ll find a list of the cardinal Turkish numbers. Drill these numbers into your brain with this course on improving your memory.

Let’s start with numbers zero through ten:

  • 0 – sıfır – (SUH-fuhr)
  • 1 – bir – (beer)
  • 2 – iki – (eeKEE)
  • 3 – üç – (ewch)
  • 4 – dört – (durrt)
  • 5 – beş – (behsh)
  • 6 – altı – (ahlTUH)
  • 7 – yedi – (yehDEE)
  • 8 – sekiz – (sehKEEZ)
  • 9 – dokuz – (dohKOOZ)
  • 10 – on – (ohn)

Continuing on, here are numbers 11 to 20:

  • 11 – onbir – (ohnbeer)
  • 12 – oniki – (ohneeKEE)
  • 13 – onüç – (ohnewch)
  • 14 – ondört – (ohndurrt)
  • 15 – onbeş – (ohnbehsh)
  • 16 – onaltı – (ohnahlTUH)
  • 17 – onyedi – (ohnyeh-DEE)
  • 18 – onsekiz – (ohnseh-KEEZ)
  • 19 – ondokuz – (ohndoh-KOOZ)
  • 20 – yirmi – (yeer-MEE)

Have you noticed a pattern here? For all the numbers from 11 to 19, we’ve simply use the word for “ten” as a prefix to the number. On is the Turkish word for ten, and bir is the Turkish word for one, so what is eleven? Put them together, and you get onbir! Then oniki (ten two), onüç (ten three), and so on.

The same goes for numbers in the twenties and thirties, etc. The Turkish word for twenty is yirmi. So what do you think twenty-one is? Put twenty and one together and you get… yirmibir. Continue this pattern, and you get the idea. Check out this beginner’s Turkish language course for more grammar help.

Need to count even higher? Let’s get you started:

  • 10 – on – (ohn)
  • 20 – yirmi – (yeer-MEE)
  • 30 – otuz – (ohTOOZ)
  • 40 – kırk – (kuhrk)
  • 50 – elli – (ehlLEE)
  • 60 – altmış – (ahltMUSH)
  • 70 – yetmiş – (yehtMEESH)
  • 80 – seksen – (sehkSEHN)
  • 90 – doksan – (dohkSAHN)
  • 100 – yüz – (yewz)
  • 200 –  ikiyüz – (eeKEE yewz)
  • 300 – üçyüz – (ewch-yews)
  • 1,000 – bin – (been)
  • 2,000 – ikibin – (ee-KEE-been)
  • 10,000 – onbin – (ohn-been)
  • 1,000,000 – milyon – (meelYOHN)
  • 1,000,000,000 – milyar – (meelYAHR)
  • 1,000,000,000,000 – trilyon – (treelYOHN)

Turkish Numbers : Ordinal

Ordinal numbers, as the name suggests, deals with numbers in terms of order, rather than amount. First, second, and third are all ordinal numbers. In English, there are a number of suffixes we add to the ends of numbers or to tweak existing cardinal numbers to fit this ordered variant. These suffixes include -st, -nd, -rd, and -th.

In Turkish, the ordinal number suffixes are:

  • -inci
  • -ıncı
  • -üncü
  • -uncu

Which suffix we use to make a cardinal number an ordinal one depends on the vowel harmony rule, which is a linguistic constraint on which vowels in a word are allowed to stand side by side. Turkish has two vowel classes which complicates things a bit, but we won’t go too much into that here.

You can check out the beginner’s level Turkish language course linked above for help there. As far as learning numbers goes, let’s just rely on old fashioned memory to normalize this system for us. Learn how to master your memory in this course, or check out this guide for some additional memorization techniques.

The ordinal numbers below won’t include the pronunciations. Practice the pronunciations learned above to learn how to say the numbers below!

  • 1st – birinci or ilk
  • 2nd – ikinci
  • 3rd – üçüncü
  • 4th – dördüncü
  • 5th – beşinci
  • 6th – altıncı
  • 7th – yedinci
  • 8th – sekizinci
  • 9th – dokuzuncu
  • 10th – onuncu
  • 11th – onbirinci
  • 12th – onikinci
  • 13th – onüçüncü
  • 14th – ondördüncü
  • 15th – onbeşinci
  • 16th – onaltıncı
  • 17th – onyedinci
  • 18th – onsekizinci
  • 19th – ondokuzuncu
  • 20th – yirminci
  • 100th – yüzüncü
  • 1,000th – bininci
  • 1,000,000th – milyonuncu

Turkish Numbers Quiz

Knowing what we’ve learned from the lists above, can you piece together more complicated Turkish numbers and say them in Turkish? Try the practice questions below, borrowed from this great website on the Turkish language.

Questions

1. 58

2. 63

3. 97

4. 104

5. 148

6. 752

7. 1,765

8. 48,392

9. 305,018

10. 4,762,345,258

Answers

Note how some of the more complicated numbers are written in segments.

1. elli sekiz

2. altmış üç

3. doksan yedi

4. yüz dört

5. yüz kırk sekiz

6. yedi yüz elli iki

7.  bin yedi yüz altmış beş

8. kırk sekiz bin üç yüz doksan iki

9. üç yüz beş bin on sekiz

10. dört milyar yedi yüz altmış iki milyon üç yüz kırk beş bin iki yüz elli sekiz

Teach yourself a foreign language with the help of this course. It doesn’t have to be a struggle! If Turkish isn’t doing it for you, you can check out any number of these Udemy language courses, which includes everything from Italian to Japanese, Hebrew, and more.