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I noticed that in my dictionary 29日 is read either as にじゅうくにち or にじゅうきゅうにち but 19日 doesn't have じゅうきゅうにち reading, only じゅうくにち. Can 19日 be read as じゅうきゅうにち?

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Most people (I would like to say "everyone" but just in case..) say:

「じゅうにち」 and 「にじゅうにち」

Those are how the NHK announcers pronounce 「19日」 and 「29日」, respectively, as well.

I am honestly perplexed to hear that your dictionry gives 「 にじゅうきゅうにち 」 as an option.

Both 「じゅうきゅうにち」 and 「 にじゅうきゅうにち 」 sound quite substandard to me.

When you really want to confirm an important date, however, you might first use the standard pronunciation and then confirm it by repeating the date using the 「きゅう」 version. That would be quite common but if you used the 「きゅう」 version out of the blue as if it were the standard form, quite a few people would find it a little weird.

NOTE: I was only thinking of the 19th and 29th days of a month in answering your question. If you were thinking of "(for) 19 or 29 days", then both readings would be correct and natural.

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  • When talking about '(for) 19 or 29 days' wouldn't that technically be 19/29日間「にちかん」?
    – keithmaxx
    Dec 14 '17 at 9:24
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NHK has an official posting on how they mean to read this. Apparently when the numbers are read alone they use "kyuu", but when appended to a term (in a date, for example) then they use the reading "ku" for ease of enunciation.

They thus use 二{にじゅう}九{きゅう} for standalone numbers but 平{へい}成{せい}二{にじゅう}九{く}年{ねん} reading this year or 十{じゅう}九{く}日{にち} for the 19th day of the month.

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