Would it be よんじゅうかこくor start with しじゅう?

If anyone cares, the sentence was 俺は全世界四十ヵ国に支店を持つ、大企業の社長だった。 I was the president of a large corporation with branches in forty countries around the world.

It appeared in the following volume: Author:青山章二 (Aoyama Shōji), title: びん ("Bottle") in 星新一 (Shin'ichi Hoshi, editor) ショートショートの広場 (Shōto shōto no hiroba) ISBN-13 : 978-4061835559, page 192

  • 1
    It's よんじゅっかこく or よんじっかこく.(Too short to answer)
    – user4092
    Oct 19, 2020 at 5:36
  • What does "Too short to answer" mean? Should I have quoted the passage at greater length for more context or were you rushing to catch a bus?
    – Ned Reif
    Oct 20, 2020 at 6:22

1 Answer 1


As a rule of thumb, 四 can only be read as し when it directly precedes a counter--if there are intervening numbers, it's よん. So 40, 400, etc., nearly always use よん. There are rare exceptions for numbers in the forty range, as described here, but since your question isn't about an archaic set phrase, it's going to be よん.

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