Norwegian Numbers: From Zero to One Million

Norwegian, the official language of Norway, shares many similarities with other Scandinavian languages. Understanding how to count in Norwegian is not only fundamental for basic communication but also offers a window into the culture and daily life of Norwegians. Whether you’re planning to visit Norway or are interested in the language, registering for a Norwegian language class at the NLS Norwegian Language School can provide an immersive learning experience. This article will delve into the numbers from zero to one million, exploring key features, usage, grammar rules, and providing relevant vocabulary, phrases, dialogues, and a quiz to test your knowledge.

Basic Numbers: 0 to 10

The foundation of Norwegian numerals starts with the numbers zero to ten. These numbers are essential for everyday communication, and their simplicity is akin to other Germanic languages. Norwegian numbers also vary based on grammatical gender: masculine, feminine, and neuter.

  • 0: null
    • “Det er null problem” (It’s no problem) or “Telefonnummeret mitt har en null” (My phone number has a zero).
  • 1: en (masc.) / ei (fem.) / ett (neut.)
    • One is gendered in Norwegian: “en” for masculine, “ei” for feminine, and “ett” for neuter. Examples: “Jeg har en bil” (I have a car – masculine), “Jeg har ei bok” (I have one book – feminine), and “Jeg har ett hus” (I have one house – neuter).
  • 2: to
    • “Jeg har to barn” (I have two children) or “To kaffe, takk” (Two coffees, please).
  • 3: tre
    • “Vi er tre venner” (We are three friends) or “Hun har tre katter” (She has three cats).
  • 4: fire
    • “Fire år siden” (Four years ago) or “Fire glass vann” (Four glasses of water).
  • 5: fem
    • “Fem minutter igjen” (Five minutes left) or “Fem stjerner” (Five stars).
  • 6: seks
    • “Seks ganger” (Six times) or “De har seks hunder” (They have six dogs).
  • 7: sju (or syv)
    • Both “sju” and “syv” are used for seven, though “sju” is more common in modern Norwegian. Examples: “Sju dager i uka” (Seven days a week) or “Syv bøker på hylla” (Seven books on the shelf).
  • 8: åtte
    • “Åtte timer søvn” (Eight hours of sleep) or “Hun har åtte søsken” (She has eight siblings).
  • 9: ni
    • “Ni måneder gravid” (Nine months pregnant) or “Ni ganger ut av ti” (Nine times out of ten).
  • 10: ti
    • “Ti kroner” (Ten kroner) or “Ti minutter til” (Ten more minutes).

Grammar Note: Norwegian numbers are typically placed before the noun they modify. The gender of the noun affects the form of the number “one.”

Dialogue:

A: Hvor mange barn har du? (How many children do you have?)
B: Jeg har to barn. (I have two children.)
A: Og hvor mange katter har du? (And how many cats do you have?)
B: Jeg har tre katter. (I have three cats.)
A: Hva med deg? (What about you?)
B: Jeg har en bil, ei bok, og ett hus. (I have a car, a book, and a house.)

Numbers from 11 to 20

The numbers from eleven to twenty in Norwegian combine the unit number with a base word for ten, creating a unique structure for each numeral.

  • 11: elleve
    • “Jeg har elleve spørsmål” (I have eleven questions) or “Elleve elever i klassen” (Eleven students in the class).
  • 12: tolv
    • “Tolv måneder i året” (Twelve months in a year) or “Hun er tolv år gammel” (She is twelve years old).
  • 13: tretten
    • “Han har tretten epler” (He has thirteen apples) or “Tretten dager til jul” (Thirteen days until Christmas).
  • 14: fjorten
    • “Fjorten dager” (Fourteen days) or “Fjorten år siden” (Fourteen years ago).
  • 15: femten
    • “Femten minutter” (Fifteen minutes) or “Jeg har femten kroner” (I have fifteen kroner).
  • 16: seksten
    • “Seksten år gammel” (Sixteen years old) or “Seksten timer arbeid” (Sixteen hours of work).
  • 17: sytten
    • “Sytten mennesker i rommet” (Seventeen people in the room) or “Sytten grader ute” (Seventeen degrees outside).
  • 18: atten
    • “Atten år gammel” (Eighteen years old) or “Atten biter sjokolade” (Eighteen pieces of chocolate).
  • 19: nitten
    • “Nitten hunder” (Nineteen dogs) or “Nitten ganger” (Nineteen times).
  • 20: tjue
    • “Tjue kroner” (Twenty kroner) or “Tjue år gammel” (Twenty years old).

Grammar Note: The numbers from 11 to 20 are typically used in everyday contexts such as ages, time periods, and quantities. These numbers do not change based on gender or case.

Dialogue:

A: Hvor gammel er du? (How old are you?)
B: Jeg er seksten år gammel. (I am sixteen years old.)
A: Når har du bursdag? (When is your birthday?)
B: Om tretten dager! (In thirteen days!)

Tens: 30 to 90

Norwegian numbers for the tens follow a regular pattern, with each base number combined with the Norwegian word for ten.

  • 30: tretti (or tredve, less commonly used)
    • “Tretti dager i måneden” (Thirty days in the month) or “Tretti minutter igjen” (Thirty minutes left).
  • 40: førti
    • “Førti år gammel” (Forty years old) or “Førti prosent av befolkningen” (Forty percent of the population).
  • 50: femti
    • “Femti kroner” (Fifty kroner) or “Femti år siden” (Fifty years ago).
  • 60: seksti
    • “Seksti sekunder” (Sixty seconds) or “Seksti mennesker” (Sixty people).
  • 70: sytti
    • “Sytti ganger” (Seventy times) or “Sytti år gammel” (Seventy years old).
  • 80: åtti
    • “Åtti kroner” (Eighty kroner) or “Åtti prosent” (Eighty percent).
  • 90: nitti
    • “Nitti minutter” (Ninety minutes) or “Nitti grader” (Ninety degrees).

Grammar Note: The tens in Norwegian are formed by adding “ti” (ten) to the base numbers. These do not change with gender or case.

Dialogue:

A: Hvor mange prosent er det? (How many percent is it?)
B: Det er førti prosent. (It is forty percent.)
A: Og hvor mange minutter er igjen? (And how many minutes are left?)
B: Det er tretti minutter igjen. (There are thirty minutes left.)

Constructing Numbers: 21 to 99

To construct numbers between the tens, Norwegian uses the conjunction “og” (and) to link the base ten number with the unit.

  • 21: tjueen
    • “Jeg har tjueen bøker” (I have twenty-one books) or “Han er tjueen år gammel” (He is twenty-one years old).
  • 32: trettito
    • “Trettito personer i kø” (Thirty-two people in line) or “Trettito minutter til toget” (Thirty-two minutes until the train).
  • 45: førtifem
    • “Førtifem kroner” (Forty-five kroner) or “Førtifem dager til ferie” (Forty-five days until vacation).
  • 58: femtiåtte
    • “Femtiåtte ganger” (Fifty-eight times) or “Femtiåtte sider i boka” (Fifty-eight pages in the book).
  • 69: sekstini
    • “Sekstini dager” (Sixty-nine days) or “Sekstini prosent” (Sixty-nine percent).
  • 77: syttisju
    • “Syttisju år gammel” (Seventy-seven years old) or “Syttisju skritt” (Seventy-seven steps).
  • 84: åttifire
    • “Åttifire kroner” (Eighty-four kroner) or “Åttifire timer” (Eighty-four hours).
  • 93: nittitre
    • “Nittitre minutter” (Ninety-three minutes) or “Nittitre grader” (Ninety-three degrees).

Grammar Note: The conjunction “og” (and) is used to link the tens and units in numbers from 21 to 99. The structure is similar to that in English.

Dialogue:

A: Hvor mange bøker har du lest i år? (How many books have you read this year?)
B: Jeg har lest tjueen bøker. (I have read twenty-one books.)
A: Wow, det er mange! Hvor mange sider var den lengste boken? (Wow, that’s a lot! How many pages was the longest book?)
B: Den hadde femtiåtte sider. (It had fifty-eight pages.)

Hundreds: 100 to 900

The hundreds in Norwegian are straightforward, formed by combining the base number with “hundre” (hundred).

  • 100: hundre
    • “Jeg har hundre kroner” (I have one hundred kroner) or “Hundre prosent sikker” (One hundred percent sure).
  • 200: to hundre
    • “To hundre mennesker” (Two hundred people) or “To hundre sider” (Two hundred pages).
  • 300: tre hundre
    • “Tre hundre år gammel” (Three hundred years old) or “Tre hundre kopper” (Three hundred cups).
  • 400: fire hundre
    • “Fire hundre år” (Four hundred years) or “Fire hundre trær” (Four hundred trees).
  • 500: fem hundre
    • “Fem hundre kroner” (Five hundred kroner) or “Fem hundre stjerner” (Five hundred stars).
  • 600: seks hundre
    • “Seks hundre mennesker” (Six hundred people) or “Seks hundre meter” (Six hundred meters).
  • 700: sju hundre
    • “Sju hundre år gammel” (Seven hundred years old) or “Sju hundre blomster” (Seven hundred flowers).
  • 800: åtte hundre
    • “Åtte hundre dager” (Eight hundred days) or “Åtte hundre bøker” (Eight hundred books).
  • 900: ni hundre
    • “Ni hundre kroner” (Nine hundred kroner) or “Ni hundre timer” (Nine hundred hours).

Grammar Note: The hundreds are formed by adding “hundre” to the base numbers. These do not change with gender or case.

Dialogue:

A: Hvor mange sider er det i denne boken? (How many pages are there in this book?)
B: Det er tre hundre sider. (There are three hundred pages.)
A: Og hvor mange trær er det i parken? (And how many trees are there in the park?)
B: Det er fire hundre trær. (There are four hundred trees.)

Constructing Larger Numbers: 101 to 999

For numbers above one hundred, Norwegian combines the hundred with the tens and units, using “og” (and) between the hundred and the rest of the number.

  • 101: hundre og en/ei/ett
    • “Jeg har hundre og en bok” (I have one hundred and one books – feminine) or “Jeg har hundre og ett hus” (I have one hundred and one houses – neuter).
  • 215: to hundre og femten
    • “To hundre og femten kroner” (Two hundred and fifteen kroner) or “To hundre og femten sider” (Two hundred and fifteen pages).
  • 347: tre hundre og førtisju
    • “Tre hundre og førtisju mennesker” (Three hundred and forty-seven people) or “Tre hundre og førtisju blomster” (Three hundred and forty-seven flowers).
  • 589: fem hundre og åttini
    • “Fem hundre og åttini kroner” (Five hundred and eighty-nine kroner) or “Fem hundre og åttini dager” (Five hundred and eighty-nine days).
  • 764: sju hundre og sekstifire
    • “Sju hundre og sekstifire år gammel” (Seven hundred and sixty-four years old) or “Sju hundre og sekstifire timer” (Seven hundred and sixty-four hours).
  • 890: åtte hundre og nitti
    • “Åtte hundre og nitti kroner” (Eight hundred and ninety kroner) or “Åtte hundre og nitti minutter” (Eight hundred and ninety minutes).

Grammar Note: The conjunction “og” (and) is used between the hundreds and the tens/units, similar to the structure used in numbers 21 to 99.

Dialogue:

A: Hvor mye koster denne boken? (How much does this book cost?)
B: Den koster hundre og en kroner. (It costs one hundred and one kroner.)
A: Og hvor gammel er bygningen? (And how old is the building?)
B: Den er sju hundre og sekstifire år gammel. (It is seven hundred and sixty-four years old.)

Thousands: 1,000 to 1,000,000

The word for thousand is “tusen”, and forming thousands in Norwegian is straightforward, using the base number with “tusen”.

  • 1,000: tusen
    • “Tusen takk” (A thousand thanks) or “Bilen koster tusen kroner” (The car costs one thousand kroner).
  • 2,000: to tusen
    • “To tusen mennesker” (Two thousand people) or “To tusen år” (Two thousand years).
  • 3,000: tre tusen
    • “Tre tusen bøker” (Three thousand books) or “Tre tusen kilometer” (Three thousand kilometers).
  • 4,000: fire tusen
    • “Fire tusen kroner” (Four thousand kroner) or “Fire tusen trær” (Four thousand trees).
  • 5,000: fem tusen
    • “Fem tusen meter” (Five thousand meters) or “Fem tusen år siden” (Five thousand years ago).
  • 6,000: seks tusen
    • “Seks tusen sider” (Six thousand pages) or “Seks tusen mennesker” (Six thousand people).
  • 7,000: sju tusen
    • “Sju tusen kilometer” (Seven thousand kilometers) or “Sju tusen kroner” (Seven thousand kroner).
  • 8,000: åtte tusen
    • “Åtte tusen mennesker” (Eight thousand people) or “Åtte tusen år” (Eight thousand years).
  • 9,000: ni tusen
    • “Ni tusen kroner” (Nine thousand kroner) or “Ni tusen dager” (Nine thousand days).
  • 10,000: ti tusen
    • “Ti tusen kroner” (Ten thousand kroner) or “Ti tusen meter” (Ten thousand meters).

For numbers in the thousands, combining hundreds and tens follows the same pattern:

  • 1,234: tusen to hundre og trettifire
    • “Jeg har tusen to hundre og trettifire kroner” (I have one thousand two hundred and thirty-four kroner) or “Avstanden er tusen to hundre og trettifire kilometer” (The distance is one thousand two hundred and thirty-four kilometers).
  • 5,678: fem tusen seks hundre og syttiåtte
    • “Fem tusen seks hundre og syttiåtte kroner” (Five thousand six hundred and seventy-eight kroner) or “Fem tusen seks hundre og syttiåtte timer” (Five thousand six hundred and seventy-eight hours).
  • 9,999: ni tusen ni hundre og nittini
    • “Ni tusen ni hundre og nittini år siden” (Nine thousand nine hundred and ninety-nine years ago) or “Ni tusen ni hundre og nittini trær” (Nine thousand nine hundred and ninety-nine trees).

Grammar Note: The thousands are combined with hundreds, tens, and units in the same way as smaller numbers, using “og” (and) where necessary.

Dialogue:

A: Hvor mange mennesker bor her? (How many people live here?)
B: Det bor fem tusen seks hundre og syttiåtte mennesker. (There are five thousand six hundred and seventy-eight people living here.)
A: Og hvor mange kilometer er det til byen? (And how many kilometers is it to the city?)
B: Det er tusen to hundre og trettifire kilometer. (It is one thousand two hundred and thirty-four kilometers.)

Hundred Thousands and One Million

The transition to hundred thousands and millions is similar, using “hundre tusen” for hundred thousand and “million” for million.

  • 100,000: hundre tusen
    • “Jeg vant hundre tusen kroner” (I won one hundred thousand kroner) or “Det er hundre tusen mennesker her” (There are one hundred thousand people here).
  • 200,000: to hundre tusen
    • “To hundre tusen kroner” (Two hundred thousand kroner) or “To hundre tusen bøker” (Two hundred thousand books).
  • 500,000: fem hundre tusen
    • “Fem hundre tusen år” (Five hundred thousand years) or “Fem hundre tusen trær” (Five hundred thousand trees).

Finally, one million in Norwegian is “én million”:

  • 1,000,000: én million
    • “Én million kroner” (One million kroner) or “Én million mennesker” (One million people).

Grammar Note: Larger numbers follow the same structural patterns as smaller numbers. “Hundre tusen” and “én million” are used as the base for constructing even larger numbers.

Dialogue:

A: Hvor mye kostet huset? (How much did the house cost?)
B: Det kostet én million kroner. (It cost one million kroner.)
A: Hvor mange år er det gammelt? (How many years old is it?)
B: Det er hundre tusen år gammelt. (It is one hundred thousand years old.)

Conclusion

Mastering Norwegian numbers from zero to one million provides a solid foundation for understanding the language and engaging with Norwegian culture. The numerical system is logical, with patterns that become evident as you practice. Whether you’re traveling in Norway, learning the language for personal interest, or conducting business, understanding Norwegian numbers will greatly enhance your communication skills and cultural competence. For a more comprehensive learning experience, consider registering for a Norwegian language class at the NLS Norwegian Language School.

Quiz: Test Your Knowledge

  1. What is the Norwegian word for forty?
  2. How do you say “seventy-seven” in Norwegian?
  3. Translate “I have three cars” to Norwegian.
  4. What is “one thousand two hundred and thirty-four” in Norwegian?
  5. How do you say “nine hundred ninety-nine” in Norwegian?

Answers:

  1. Førti
  2. Syttisju
  3. Jeg har tre biler.
  4. Tusen to hundre og trettifire
  5. Ni hundre og nittini

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