Basic Numbers

This lesson isn’t 100% complete yet. But it’s done enough you can learn from it. If you bump into a problem let me know.

You probably don’t need me to tell you numbers are an important foundational component of learning Japanese.

They’ll help you order at restaurants, tell time, count money, and so on. So let’s get these stuffed into memory real quick.

Zero through ten

First, the basic, baseline numbers. Get to know these well, they combine to form nearly all the rest of the numbers.

0 → ぜろ (zero)
1 → いち (ichi)
2 → (ni)
3 → さん (san)
4 → よん (yon)
5 → (go)
6 → ろく (roku)
7 → なな (nana)
8 → はち (hachi)
9 →きゅう (kyuu)

Into the 10’s

Once you reach the tens you’ll see a pattern emerge. Where the basic numbers are tacked onto the end of the tens.

10 → じゅう (jyuu)
11 → じゅういち (jyuu+ichi)
12 → じゅに (jyuu+ni)

When you get past 10 and into the 20’s, 30’s, etc… you’ll tack a number onto the front too, like so:

20 → にじゅう (ni+jyuu)
21 → にじゅういち (ni+jyuu+ichi)

35 → さんじゅうご (san+jyuu+go)

Into the hundreds

The same pattern applies when you get into the 100’s too.

100 → ひゃく (hyaku)
101 → ひゃくいち (hyaku+ichi)

402 → よんひゃくに (yon+hyaku+ni)

This makes counting out the basic number quite easy in Japanese. However, you’re going to learn quickly that they also have different words for counting different types of things — but that is for another lesson.