First, Second, Third, Fourth or 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th? One, Two, Three or 1, 2, 3?

When we use words like first, second, third, fourth or 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, in sentences, what will be the best way to write these? Also, what about numbers? Do we put them as numbers or numerals?

Here are some sample sentences,

  • He got first/1st class in that examination.
  • He gave me two/2 books.
  • He will be the first/1st to get there.
  • My son is finishing his seventh/7th semester.
  • The turkey weighed five/5 Kg.

Yes, I understand that we can have many examples like the above.

Do you think that you can give some general rules for these?


I think it’s better to spell out numbers while writing essays or letters or related pieces. (In Mathematics or any Science subject or Commerce subject can one freely use the numbers.)
Also, for giving measurements, The turkey weighed five kilograms seems better than The turkey weighed five Kg. When you are already writing out the number in words, why write the unit in the short form? Spoils the look.

Source : Link , Question Author : Masroor , Answer Author : Wonder

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