Tag Archives: Numbers

How to use the phrase “a number of…”

WRONG There is a number of possible solutions that we can discuss. RIGHT There are a number of possible solutions that we can discuss. WRONG A number of protesters was seen outside the premises. RIGHT A number of protesters were … Continue reading

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How to write dates

There is a difference between how dates are written in British and American English. In British English dates are usually written in the day-month-year format, for example: 6 October 2017 In American English dates are usually written in the month-day-year … Continue reading

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How to use hyphens and dashes

A hyphen is a short line used in compound words and double-barrelled names. There’s one there in “double-barrelled”, which is a compound word. Hyphens don’t usually have spaces before or after them. A dash is a long line used as a punctuation symbol. … Continue reading

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The difference between “milliard” and “billion”

In English, a “billion” is 1 000 000 000 (a thousand million). This has always been the case in US English. In British English, in the past the word “billion” meant a million million. If we wanted to refer to a thousand … Continue reading

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The difference between “ton” and “tonne”

Both “ton” and “tonne” are units of weight, but a “ton” is a British and American measure, while a “tonne” is a metric measure. A “tonne” is equal to 1,000 kg. In the US it may be referred to as … Continue reading

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An important point about how to write numbers

When we write numbers in English we use commas where continental European countries often use points, and points where continental Europeans use commas. So, for example, while many continental Europeans would write 45.678,90 (forty-five thousand, six hundred and seventy-eight and … Continue reading

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