Ordinal Numbers, Days & Dates

Ordinal Numbers, Days & Dates

In English there are cardinal numbers (e.g. one, two, three, four) and ordinal numbers (e.g. first, second, third, fourth). Before you learn ordinal numbers, read this article about cardinal numbers. If you feel ready, it’s time to learn ordinal ones:


Add -th to the cardinal number which you want to make ordinal:

  • 4 (four) – 4th (fourth): This is my fourth job. This is the twenty fourth time.
  • 6 (six) – 6th (sixth): Today is the sixth day. Where is the thirty sixth car?
  • 15 (fifteen) – 15th (fifteenth): This is the fifteenth visit.

Remember the spelling of the numbers:

  • 8 (eight) – 8th (eighth) (NOT eightth)
  • 9 (nine) – ninth (NOT nineth)
  • 12 (twelve) – 12th (twelfth) (NOT twelveth)
  • 20 (twenty) – 20th (twentieth) (NOT twentyth) / 30 (thirty) – 30th (thirtieth) etc.


  • 1 (one) – 1st (first): This is the first time. This is the one hundred and first city.
  • 2 (two) – 2nd (second): This is the second serving. Welcome to the twenty second summit. 
  • 3 (three) – 3rd (third): This is her third concert. It’s only the third class.
  • 5 (five) – 5th (fifth): This is the fifth visit. I’m ready to take the twenty fifth course.

Use the with ordinal numbers: the first time, the second date, the thirtieth party etc.

Let’s sum it up:

1st first

2nd second

3rd third

4th fourth

5th fifth

6th sixth

7th seventh

8th eighth

9th ninth

10th tenth

11th eleventh

12th twelfth

13th thirteenth

14th fourteenth

15th fifteenth

16th sixteenth

17th seventeenth

18th eighteenth

19th nineteenth

20th twentieth

30th thirtieth

31st thirty-first

32nd thirty-second

33rd thirty-third

40th fortieth


We can write the date like this:

9 December OR December 9 OR 9th December OR 12.09.2018 OR 12 / 09 / 2018

We say the date like this:

What’s the date today? – It’s December the ninth OR It’s the ninth of December.

Read about how to say years here.

Remember that we use the preposition on when we talk about dates:

I was born on January 2. See you on 6th February.


Days of the week Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday
Months of the year January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
Seasons Winter, spring, summer, autumn
Some special days (in Great Britain) Christmas Day (December 25)

New Year’s Day (January 1)

Boxing Day (December 26)

Remember that days and month have a capital letter (April NOT april, Monday NOT monday)

Mind the prepositions:

I have classes on Mondays.

I was born in June.

I have a holiday in summer.

I want to be with my family on Christmas Day.

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