Nepali

Nepali Numbers & Classifiers Lesson

Nepali Numbers and Classifiers

It’s time to learn some numbers in Nepali and how to use them when counting!

Here are the numbers 0-10. Then, the numbers 20, 30, etc. in increments of ten up to 100 and 1000. These numbers are helpful to know initially because the Nepali rupee has notes of 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500, and 1000.

Number Devanagari Number Devanagari Spelling Roman Spelling
0 सुन्ना sunna
1 एक ek
2 दुई dui
3 तीन tin
4 चार chaar
5

 

पाँच paanch*
6

 

chha
7 सात saat
8

 

आठ aaTh
9

 

नौ nau
10 १० दश das
20 २० बिस bis
30 ३० तिस tis
40 ४० चालिस chaalis
50 ५० पचास pachaas
60 ६० साठी saaThi
70 ७० सत्तरी sattari
80 ८० असी asi
90 ९० नब्बे nabbe
100 १०० सय saya
1000 १,००० हजार hajaar

*The “n” is a nasal sound. So, the “n” should not be pronounced but should emulate a nasal sound similar to “paãch.”

Now, it’s time to count!

In English, if someone handed us four books to count we would say:

“There are four books.” 

However, in Nepali, a classifier must follow the numbers when counting. There are two forms of classifiers: one is used for counting people, the other is used to count all other things, including animals.

 

People

जना (janaa)

1 person             एक जना मान्छे      ek janaa maanchhe

40 people          चालिस जना         chaalis janaa

You can use the term person/people following janaa or choose to omit it. Since janaa is only used for people, it is implied and is not necessary to include the word person/people.

 

There are fifty people.

पचास जना छन्।

Pachaas janaa chhan.

 

Things/Animals

 वटा (waTaa)

For the first three numbers, वटा (waTaa) combines with the number of items and takes on a different form.

1                एउटा     (ek + waTaa = euTaa)

2                दुइटा            (dui + waTaa = duiTaa)

3                तिन्टा         (tin+ euTaa = tinTaa)

 

1 book                एउटा किताब        euTa kitab

2 cats                  दुइटा बिरालो        duiTa biraalo

3 homes             तिन्टाघर            tinTaa ghar

 

The rest of the numbers take on the regular form.

 

7 oranges           सातवटा सुन्तला        saat waTa suntalaa

 

1000 birds          हजारवटा चरा                hajaar waTaa charaa

 

Exceptions 

There are exceptions. These classifiers are not used when telling time or dealing with money. For example, you can just say तिन दिन (tin din) for “three days,” or सय रुपैया (saya rupaiyaa) for “one hundred rupees.”

Let’s practice below!

 PRACTICE 

__________________________  नाशपाती (naaspaati)

 

 

_______________________ (try writing rupaiyaa!)

 

 

________________ (try writing maanchhe!)

 

Photos are from the Bing search engine on Microsoft Office Word.

 

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Resources for Self-Instructional Learners of Less Commonly Taught Languages by University of Wisconsin-Madison Students in African 671 is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.