French numbers

French Numbers 1-100: Ultimate Guide to Counting in French (With Audio)

Bonjour! If you are learning French, you might have started complaining about French numbers.

True, French numbers can be a headache. 😂

french numbers can be a headache

But it is definitely not something that you cannot conquer after reading this article, and I am happy to help.

My name is Eden, and I’ve been teaching French for 5 years. Let me show you and guide you through the world of French numbers.

Vous êtes prêts ? Trois, deux, un… C’est parti! Let’s begin counting in French!

Looking for tips on learning languages in general. Don’t forget to check out our guide to language learning.

French Numbers 1-100

French Numbers 1-10

First of all, let’s start with the basics. Counting from 1 to 10 in French is quite easy. The numbers are all independent. You just need to memorize them.

  • Zéro
     
  • Un
     
  • Deux
     
  • Trois
     
  • Quatre
     
  • Cinq
     
  • Six
     
  • Sept
     
  • Huit
     
  • Neuf
     
  • 10 Dix
     

French numbers 1-10

Numbers Song In French, Let’s hear how to read 1-10 in French!

 

 

French Numbers 11-20

11-onze              12-douze              13 – treize              14 – quatorze          15 – quinze

                       
                       
                       
                       

16 – seize             17 – dix-sept             18 – dix-huit             19 – dix-neuf         20 – vingt

                         
                       
                       
                       

When you are counting from 10 to 20 in French, you can now see two types of numbers: independent and composed numbers.

As you might have noticed, from 17 to 19 (dix-sept, dix-huit, dix-neuf) we have the first glance of composed numbers: ten-seven, ten-eight and ten-nine.

Vingt is an independent number.

French Numbers: When to use the Hyphens –

Are you wondering if there’s an easy way to memorize the use of hyphens in numbers?

Well, it really depends on how obsessed you are with spelling French numbers out.

If you are not obsessed, the simple rule is to add hyphens between words in composed numbers. (This rule was mentioned in “Reforms of French Orthography“.)

French Numbers 20-69

Counting 20-69 is easy.

The rules:

    • Firstly: 20/30/40/50/60 are independent numbers.
    • Secondly: 21/31/41/51/61 share the same rule: “vingt/trente/quarante/cinquante/soixante” plus “et un”
    • Everything else: “vingt/trente/quarante/cinquante/soixante” plus “-un/deux/trois/…/neuf”
20vingt30trente40quarante50cinquante60soixante
21vingt et un31trente et un41quarante et un51cinquante et un 61soixante et un
22vingt-deux32trente-deux42quarante-deux52cinquante-deux62soixante-deux
23vingt-trois33trente-trois43quarante-trois53cinquante-trois63soixante-trois
24vingt-quatre34trente-quatre44quarante-quatre54cinquante-quatre64soixante-quatre
25vingt-cinq35trente-cinq45quarante-cinq55cinquante-cinq65soixante-cinq
26vingt-six36trente-six46quarante-six56cinquante-six66soixante-six
27vingt-sept37trente-sept47quarante-sept57cinquante-sept67soixante-sept
28vingt-huit38trente-huit48quarante-huit58cinquante-huit68soixante-huit
29vingt-neuf39trente-neuf49quarante-neuf59cinquante-neuf69soixante-neuf

How about 70?

Well, once you reach 70, the pattern changes. Let’s take a closer look in the next section.

French Numbers 70-80

Super easy addition based on “soixante (60)” is involved.

70Soixante-dixsixty-ten
71Soixante-et-onzesixty-and-eleven
72Soixante-douzesixty-twelve
73Soixante-treizesixty-thirteen
74Soixante-quatorzesixty-fourteen
75Soixante-quinzesixty-fifteen
76Soixante-seizesixty-sixteen
77Soixante-dix-septsixty-ten-seven
78Soixante-dix-huitsixty-ten-eight
79Soixante-dix-neufsixty-ten-nine
80Quatre-vingtsfour-twenties

French Numbers 81-100

Now, similar to counting from 61-79, counting from 81 to 99 in French is done by adding 1-19 to 80.

NumbersFREN (literal)
80Quatre-vingtsfour-twenties
81Quatre-vingt-unfour-twenty-one (no "et"!)
82Quatre-vingt-deuxfour-twenty-two
83Quatre-vingt-troisfour-twenty-three
84Quatre-vingt-quatrefour-twenty-four
85Quatre-vingt-cinqfour-twenty-five
86Quatre-vingt-sixfour-twenty-six
87Quatre-vingt-septfour-twenty-seven
88Quatre-vingt-huitfour-twenty-eight
89Quatre-vingt-neuffour-twenty-nine
90Quatre-vingt-dixfour-twenty-ten
91Quatre-vingt-onzefour-twenty-eleven
92Quatre-vingt-douzefour-twenty-twelve
93Quatre-vingt-treizefour-twenty-thirteen
94Quatre-vingt-quatorzefour-twenty-fourteen
95Quatre-vingt-quinzefour-twenty-fifteen
96Quatre-vingt-seizefour-twenty-sixteen
97Quatre-vingt-dix-septfour-twenty-ten-seven
98Quatre-vingt-dix-huitfour-twenty-ten-eight
99Quatre-vingt-dix-neuffour-twenty-ten-nine
100Centone hundred

Notice that “quatre-vingt-un” does not add an extra “et” before “un”? Yep, it’s an exception.

Regarding the “s” at the end of “quatre-vingts”, it only applies when “quatre-vingts” is not followed by any other numeral: quatre-vingts for 80, quatre-vingt-trois for 83.

Now you have mastered top 100 French numbers. Let’s review it through the video: French Lesson 1-100

If you want to do more exercises with numbers-related expressions, or even other French expressions that will come in handy, check out the LingoDeer app (Android/iOS) for the free Travel Phrasebook course!

 

Fun Facts About Numbers in French

In French-speaking Belgium and Switzerland, people don’t say “soixante-dix, quatre-vingts, quatre-vingt-dix”.

Fun Facts About Numbers in French

They will instead follow the usual pattern as from 20 to 60 and use :

Septante for 70 instead of Soixante-dix.
Octante or Huitante for 80 instead of Quatre-vingts (only in Switzerland).
Nonante for 90 instead of Quatre-vingt-dix.

This would be more logical if you take a step back and look at how 40, 50 and 60 are written. But French will always be French and if there are no complications in the language… it’s not real French!

French Numbers: What happens After 100?

Afterwards, let’s move on to the hundreds. It’s very similar to the English way of counting hundreds. Take a look at this table:

Hundreds (centaines)FR
100Cent
200Deux-cents
300Trois-cents
400Quatre-cents
500Cinq-cents
600Six-cents
700Sept-cents
800Huit-cents
900Neuf-cents
1000Mille

If you would like to read composed numbers out loud, let me show you how to do it:

Let’s take 152 as an example: cent-cinquante-deux. There are no particular tricks here, just assembling the numbers together. Hundreds + tens and units.

Now let’s do the same thing with 368 : trois-cent-soixante-huit. Have you noticed something? Yes. The “s” of “trois-cents” has disappeared. This rule is the same as the “s” of “quatre-vingts“: if it’s above 100 and not followed by any other numeral, the “s” stays (deux-cents, trois-cents…).

Before you go ahead and read the next paragraph, try to train yourself and figure out how to spell these numbers now:

145 – 324 – 294 – 569 – 812 – 900

Answer:

Cent-quarante-cinq / Trois-cent-vingt-quatre / Deux-cent-quatre-vingt-quatorze / Cinq-cent-soixante-neuf / Huit-cent-douze / Neuf-cents.

 

French Numbers: Above Thousands

Thousands in French. Surprisingly, reading thousands in French is not the hardest part of the numbers chapter!

Thousands (milliers)FR
1000Mille
2000Deux-mille
3000Trois-mille
4000Quatre-mille
5000Cinq-mille
6000Six-mille
7000Sept-mille
8000Huit-mille
9000Neuf-mille
10 000Dix-mille
100 000Cent-mille
500 000Cinq-cent-mille

In the case of thousands, “mille” stays the same, regardless if it’s followed by another numeral or none.

Above thousands come millions and billions:

million (EN) = million (FR)


billion (EN) = milliard (FR)

 

Reading Years in French

Reading years in French is simple, it only requires a little bit of training with numbers. The trick is to decompose the year into thousands + hundreds + tens and units:

1952 = mille-neuf-cent-cinquante-deux (1000 / 900 / 52)
1879 = mille-huit-cent-soixante-dix-neuf (1000 / 800 / 79)

Now, your turn! Train yourself how to read these numbers (or years) out loud:

2014 – 1789 – 1515 – 1981 – 1993 – 2003

Answers:

Deux-mille-quatorze / Mille-sept-cent-quatre-vingt-neuf / Mille-cinq-cent-quinze / Mille-neuf-cent-quatre-vingt-un / Mille-neuf-cent-quatre-vingt-treize / Deux-mille-trois.

 

Mathematics in French

Add, Subtract, Multiply and Divide in French

Reading mathematics is something that you might also have to master if you really want to know how to count in French. Here’s how you do it:

FRENExample
Addition
__ plus ___
AddUn plus deux
Soustraction
__ moins __
SubtractDeux moins un
Multiplication
__ fois __
__ multiplié par __
MultiplyTrois fois cinq
Trois multiplié par cinq
Division
__ divisé par __
DivideDix divisé par deux
Est égal à __EqualsUn plus deux est égal à trois

 

Fractions in French

How do you read fractions in French? This first table will show you how to read some fixed expressions:

Usual FractionsFR
1/2Un demi
1/3Un tiers
1/4Un quart
1/5Un cinquième
1/10Un dixième
1/20Un vingtième

Regarding other types of fractions, you will have to use this pattern:

(number) sur (number)

Let me show you an example: 5/20 = cinq sur vingt. Easy, right?

And what if you would like to read a number such as x.y? (0.5 , 2.9 … )

Regarding decimal separators (the period between numbers) in French, we don’t use the period. In fact, we will use a comma (“,“) to separate decimals : 0,5 – 2,9 … If you would like to pronounce them out loud, just add “virgule” (comma) in between.

0,5 = zéro virgule cinq  / 2,9 = deux virgule neuf.

 

Percentages in French

To read percentages in French, it’s even easier. You only will need to add “pourcent(s)” (or “pour cent”) at the end of your number.

15% = quinze pourcents / pour cent.

Note that “pourcent” will change and agree with the number (if there is more than 1%, then “pourcent” will be written with an “s”). “Pour cent”, on the other side, will always be invariable. In other words, “pourcent” is “per-hundred”, a noun, and “pour cent” is the noun phrase “per one hundred”.

 

How to Read Phone Numbers in French

Finally, let’s take a look at our last part of how to count in French… phone numbers! This may not be exactly counting, as I would say, but it’s part of daily life.

Note that most French telephone numbers are written this way :

0x xx xx xx xx (Example: 04 . 98 . 10 . 20 . 32)

So we read them by pairs (zéro quatre , quatre-vingt-dix-huit, dix, vingt, trente-deux).

However, you may stumble upon different numbers using different formats (such as 3 by 3 instead of pairs), you may read them using “hundreds” :

851 – 121 (huit-cent-cinquante-et-un / cent-vingt-et-un)

 

Conclusion

There you go! You now know pretty much everything about reading numbers in French and you may now start counting in French.

The key here is to train yourself to read numbers out loud, a little bit of exercise with LingoDeer goes a long way.

Remember, with hard work and practice, it will be easier for you to master reading and pronouncing French numbers. Au revoir et à bientôt!

 

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nonono
nonono
7 days ago

no

Mike Hock
Mike Hock
1 day ago

noice, helpful for cheating on tests and homework, trust me i know first hand.

lemon
lemon
10 hours ago
Reply to  Mike Hock

yupp

yessir
yessir
15 hours ago

insane

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