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    #1

    Numbers part of speech

    Which part of speech do numbers typically fall under? From reading online grammar books and dictionaries, most number when used are adjectives, used in answering the questions "How many or How much" Is this correct?

    For example "How many pens are there?" "There are 5 pens."---In this sentence, '5' modifys pens as an adjective right?

    And also, why is it some numbers sound like nouns when the really are just descriptive words? Like for example, one hundred is a number answering how many, but in a way, it is almost built like a noun despite it being descriptive. Is that just how numbers are formed and stated?

    Thanks to for taking the time to answer my question

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    #2

    Re: Numbers part of speech

    Hello alkaspeltzar

    Numbers fall into the category Quantifiers (Click here).

    In your example There are 5 pens, the word 5 functions as an adjective. We know this because it modifies--tells us more about / reduces the semantic scope of the noun pens.

    In answer to your question "why is it some numbers sound like nouns when the really are just descriptive words?", for example:


    Substantive: One hundred are in every package.
    the phrase One hundred is short for One hundred pens. It's a quantifier in form (that's what it looks like) but it has become a noun in function (that's its job in the sentence) because its noun has been omitted for the sake of efficiency: it's quicker to say One hundred than one hundred pens.

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    #3

    Re: Numbers part of speech

    Thank you for your quick reponse, clear answer provided with examples and proof that the answer is accurate

    I really appreicate it, sometimes people on this site seem to make stuff up, so I really appreciate your help as teacher. Thanks again

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    #4

    Re: Numbers part of speech

    You're most welcome.

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