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33 votes
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How to read: the "~" (tilde) in "3~4 行"

There is no strict rule about this. It's best not to use this "~" symbol denoting a range, when it's meant to be read out loud by someone. But if you really have to, you can read the "~" symbol as "...
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26 votes
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Is there a reason why numbers in Japanese are delimited into blocks of four?

The following is a summary of this Wikipedia article. A math book called 塵劫記【じんこうき】, published in 1627, was the first book that described (and probably defined) how to count large numbers in Japanese. ...
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23 votes
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How do I read 100°C in Japanese?

It is in a slightly different order in Japanese. First comes Celsius, then the amount, and degrees at the end. This would be one hundred degrees Celsius written out: 摂氏{せっし}100度{ど} Fahrenheit for ...
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20 votes
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What does 中3の25% exactly mean?

yes, you read 中 as ちゅう , and 中3 as ちゅうさん 中3 is a shorthand way of writing 中学校3年生 which is (Japanese) Junior High School 3rd graders or in other words, 9th graders. so 中3の25% would be "25% of (...
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19 votes
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What is the correct expression of 10/20, 20/30, 30/40 etc?

いちに, にさん, さんよん (or さんし), しご, ごろく, ろくしち (or ろくなな) and しちはち (or ななはち) are very common and handy expressions. はちきゅう is understood, but is relatively less common. We don't use よんご for some reason. They ...
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14 votes
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How to read 24-hour clock format

You can read the time of day in 24-hour format using the pronunciation for the numbers 13–24 as for the numbers 1–10 followed by 時【じ】, e.g. 15:40 = 15時40分 = じゅうごじ よんじゅっぷん 19:20 = 19時20分 = じゅうくじ ...
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13 votes

How do I read 100°C in Japanese?

The reading depends on the situation. In a scientific or technical environment Chris's answer is 100% correct. However, in conversational non-technical situations it is read differently. When ...
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13 votes
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Pronunciation of 800 / 八百

It should be always はっぴゃく [happyaku]. If they say はっびゃく [habbyaku], it’s a typo.
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11 votes
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Maths sentences: 足す and 掛ける

They are not grammatical phrases. We just read the symbols verbatim like: [⁠1]{いち} [+]{たす} [⁠2]{に} [=]{は} [⁠3]{さん} It has nothing different than saying: [⁠1]{いち} [+]{プラス} [⁠2]{に} [=]{イコール} [⁠3]{さん} ...
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11 votes
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The yomikata of 十三

Odd readings of 三: looking back in the history I've read here and there that researchers think that the Chinese-derived reading さん was originally borrowed as さむ. This is based partly on the ...
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10 votes

Why some tutorials teach writing Japanese numbers with Hiragana when they are actually written with Katakana (as on-yomi) in dictionaries?

Because it's a long tradition of kanji dictionaries, succeeded from the "first Japanese kanji dictionary" 漢和大字典. Technically, kanji were foreign notions in Japanese; on'yomi was the pronunciation, ...
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10 votes

Structure: thing を numeral (or numeral and counter) ください

Think like this: All nouns in Japanese are uncountable. You can't count apples any more than you count water or light. Thus under Japanese grammar you always have to say "two 'objects' of apple", "...
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10 votes

Listing things off: Using Hitotsu repeatedly

Using 一つ for every entry is actually an older and more traditional style of listing than using sequential numbers. Historically, Japan didn't have a tradition of assigning numbers to listed items; ...
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10 votes

How do you read out numbers in scientific notation in Japanese?

5 * 10^80 I think it's read 「ごかけるじゅうのはちじゅうじょう」. 5×10⁸⁰ -- [5]{ご} [×]{かける} [10]{じゅう} の [⁸⁰]{はちじゅうじょう} (5[掛]{か}ける10の80[乗]{じょう})
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9 votes

Is there a reason why numbers in Japanese are delimited into blocks of four?

Numbers in English and most "western" languages are still influenced by Roman numerals, where 1000 = M = mille was the largest number that had its own, non-compound name. Japanese took its numerals ...
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9 votes

Are kanji typically used in times and dates?

This largely depends on whether you write horizontally (横書【よこが】き) or vertically (縦書【たてが】き). In horizontal writing, Arabic numeral are preferred in almost all cases. 「2014年10月25日」 is the most common ...
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9 votes
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What is the correct syntax for large numbers in kanji?

The counting system for large numbers is almost the same as Western numbers, except that digits are delimited into blocks of four instead of three. You add "thousand, million, billion, trillion, ..." ...
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9 votes

In conversation can you just say "万円です" or must you say "一万円です"?

No, 百円 is not the abbreviation of 一百円. The basic rules students learn at school are: Always append 一【いち】 before 万, 億, 兆 and other larger four-digit grouping units Do not append 一【いち】 before 十, 百 and ...
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9 votes
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Leaving away the 目 suffix for ordinal numbers

Nページ can mean "N page(s)" referring to the number of pages (eg 300ページの本 = a 300-page book). However, Nページ can also mean "page N", the page marked with that number. On the other ...
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8 votes

How do people in Japan count with their fingers?

It depends on whether you are counting to yourself or displaying for others. To count with your fingers for others to see, raise your hand and face your palm outward. Holding no fingers up in this ...
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8 votes
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How do you refer to items in a list?

You are almost there. ~全部{ぜんぶ}3つ~ sounds definitely off, but 3つ全部{ぜんぶ} is fine. The first, the second, the third... 一番目{いちばんめ}、二番目{にばんめ}、三番目{さんばんめ} Slightly more formal tone. 1つ目{め}、2つ目{め}、3つ目{め} ...
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8 votes
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Structure: thing を numeral (or numeral and counter) ください

The following Wikipedia article on Japanese counter word explains well about how the counter words or counters (josūshi 助数詞) work in Japanese. In Japanese, as in Chinese and Korean, numerals cannot ...
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8 votes
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How Could One Read 4649?

I think it's [4]{よ}[6]{ろ}[4]{し}[9]{く}......
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8 votes
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How would you refer to an apartment number?

In this case, Santos isn't saying he's from (apartment) "four hundred and eight", but (apartment) "four - oh - eight". まる (kanji 丸) in this case refers to the symbol ○, which can sometimes stand in ...
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7 votes
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Are kanji typically used in times and dates?

In 12 years living in Tokyo the only place I see kanji numbers is on some restaurant menus and places going for an old-fashioned look. Arabic numbers are the norm for times, dates etc. in almost all ...
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7 votes

Pronunciation of 九

Today, きゅう is the default (i.e. productive) on-yomi pronunciation of 九 (or 9) for counting most things, and only a small portion of words requires く. Always: hours (o'clock) (9時, 19時), dates (19日, ...
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