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Fun With Words


There are a number of interesting observations that can be made about numbers, as spelled out in English. Here are a few:

Miscellaneous Facts

Eight is the first number alphabetically. Zero is the last.

Four is the only number that, spelled out, has as many letters.

Fifty and seventy are the only numbers divisible by ten that, when spelled out, have as many letters as ten divides into them. Therefore, fifty-four and seventy-four are equal to the numbers you get when you count the letters digit by digit. Thirty-six and forty-five have this same property in reverse, that is, the first word has the same number of letters as the second digit, and vice versa.

Forty is the only number whose letters are in alphabetical order. One is the only number whose letters are in reverse alphabetical order. First also has its letters in alphabetical order.

Eighty-eight, eleven letters long, is the longest number that is normally typed using strictly alternating hands (ignoring the hyphen).

Interchangeability is the word in the English language that contains the letters to form the most numbers. Its letters can form the words three, eight, nine, ten, thirteen, thirty, thirty-nine, eighty, eighty-nine, ninety, and ninety-eight.

Lewis Carroll, the author of Alice In Wonderland, once noted that "eleven plus two" and "twelve plus one" use the same letters and produce the same sum.

First Appearances of Letters

Seven is the first number not to contain any letter for the first time.

One octillion, the first number containing a c, is the largest number to contain any letter for the first time.