Expressing numbers 70 to 99

Between 20 and 69, the numbers follow the same pattern:

 
20: vingt  -> 23: vingt-trois
40: quarante   ->  41: quarante et un     
Note: No hyphen with 'et'
 

70 = soixante-dix

In French, we actually say "sixty-ten" (60 + 10) to express 'seventy'.
 
71 = 60 + 11 = soixante et onze    (No hyphen)
72 = 60 + 12 = soixante-douze
73 = 60 + 13 = soixante-treize
74 = 60 + 14 = soixante-quatorze
75 = 60 + 15 = soixante-quinze
76 = 60 + 16 = soixante-seize
77 = 60 + 17 = soixante-dix-sept
78 = 60 + 18 = soixante-dix-huit
79 = 60 + 19 = soixante-dix-neuf
 

80 = quatre-vingts

In French, to express 'eighty', we actually say "four-twenties
(4 x 20).
 
Note that quatre-vingts takes an 's' when on its own, but the 's' disappears when it is followed by another number.
 
85 = quatre-vingt-cinq
89 = quatre-vingt-neuf
 
Note also that 81 does "quatre-vingt-un" with no et  inbetween.
 

90 = quatre-vingt-dix

As for seventy, ninety becomes "eighty-ten" (80 + 10) in French.
 
91 = 80 + 11 = quatre-vingt-onze    (Note: NO et, just like 81)
92 = 80 + 12 = quatre-vingt-douze
93 = 80 + 13 = quatre-vingt-treize
94 = 80 + 14 = quatre-vingt-quatorze
95 = 80 + 15 = quatre-vingt-quinze
96 = 80 + 16 = quatre-vingt-seize
97 = 80 + 17 = quatre-vingt-dix-sept
98 = 80 + 18 = quatre-vingt-dix-huit
99 = 80 + 19 = quatre-vingt-dix-neuf
 
 

Numbers + nouns

Ma grand-mère a quatre-vingt-quatorze ans.
My grandmother is ninety-four years old.

Mon oncle a soixante-douze poules.
My uncle has seventy-two hens.

Laurent a dépensé soixante-dix-huit euros hier.
Laurent spent seventy-eight euros yesterday.

J'ai quatre-vingt-trois dollars dans ma tirelire.
I have eighty-three dollars in my piggy bank.

Il y a quatre-vingt-dix-neuf animaux dans ce zoo.
There are ninety-nine animals in that zoo.

Note that to say how many things there are, you simply use the number + thing (plural after 1), for numbers up to 999.

 

For larger numbers, see lesson Expressing large numbers: thousands, millions and billions

Examples and resources

quatre-vingts
eighty


soixante-dix-sept
seventy-seven


J'ai quatre-vingt-trois dollars dans ma tirelire.
I have eighty-three dollars in my piggy bank.


quatre-vingt-quinze
ninety-five


soixante-douze
seventy-two


Laurent a dépensé soixante-dix-huit euros hier.
Laurent spent seventy-eight euros yesterday.


quatre-vingt-quatorze
ninety-four


Ma grand-mère a quatre-vingt-quatorze ans.
My grandmother is ninety-four years old.


quatre-vingt-huit
eighty-eight


Mon oncle a soixante-douze poules.
My uncle has seventy-two hens.


quatre-vingt-trois
eighty-three


Il y a quatre-vingt-dix-neuf animaux dans ce zoo.
There are ninety-nine animals in that zoo.


Q&A Forum 2 questions, 5 answers

Doubts in Dialects

Mais .......   People in Switzerland  use Septante for Soxiante-Dix And Nonante for Quatre-Vingts  

What if we write these in kwiz/test ?

Asked 1 month ago
ChrisC1Correct answer

They'd be graded as a mistake. But it is an interesting question also from a linguistic and historic point of view. Because septante, huitante/octante nd nonante used to be the proper way in France, too, up to about 100 or so years ago.

Here is a discussion you might find interesting: https://forum.wordreference.com/threads/french-numbers-septante-huitante-octante-nonante-soixante-dix-quatre-vingts-quatre-vingt-dix.4205/

And for the record, I find quatre-vingt-dix-neuf a ludicrous way to cobble together 99: 4-20-10-9? Come on! :)

 

CécileKwiziq language super star

Hi Madhavi,

Unfortunately the use of these archaic numbers still make French people smile and are not acceptable in French from France.

In Belgium they use Septante, Nonante too :)

Doubts in Dialects

Mais .......   People in Switzerland  use Septante for Soxiante-Dix And Nonante for Quatre-Vingts  

What if we write these in kwiz/test ?

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Alternative Numbers

Just a fun fact for those who might not know - A lot of Swiss and Belgians will use septante (70), huitante (80) and nonante (90) to replace soixante-dix, quatre-vingts and quatre-vingt-dix
Asked 1 year ago
CécileKwiziq language super starCorrect answer

Hi Steven,

Your will hear 'octante' also for 80  (quatre-vingt) and a combination of all in Belgium and certain cantons of Switzerland but I believe time are changing...

However, what is certain and that these numbers are very amusing to French ears!

Hope this helps!

Hi Steven,

that would really make a lot of sense. The number 99 being represented in French as : 4 times 20 plus 19 (quatre-vingt-dix-huit) requires some getting used to. 

-- Chris. 

Alternative Numbers

Just a fun fact for those who might not know - A lot of Swiss and Belgians will use septante (70), huitante (80) and nonante (90) to replace soixante-dix, quatre-vingts and quatre-vingt-dix

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