High numbers!


I just recently started learning big numbers and I have to write some numbers into romaji and vice versa.

The one that broke me is 8 956 000
My best guess is hachi (something?) kyuuhyakuman goman rokusen

My teacher also said something about ichiman or ichisen and how it changes the one in the word but I forgot to write down what it changes to?


I’d say it’s はっぴゃくきゅうじゅうごまんろっせん (895万6千)
happyaku kyuujyuu go man rossen


Happyaku Kyuujuu Go Ten Roku Man
(はっぴゃく きゅうじゅう ご てん ろく まん aka 895.6万(まん))
Is how I would say it because I only see such massive numbers when they talk about currency on the news and the newscasters occasionally want to pronounce the numbers quickly so they do it this way , but for normal counting @trunklayer 's answer is more correct.


This is the point where you just need to calculate rather than just doing it by inspection.

I would do this:

8,956,000 / 10,000

= 895.6 (You can do this calculation in you head by moving the decimal place).

Then, we know that 万 (man) is 10,000 so we just convert 895.6 and add 万 on the end; so it’s 895.6万

Of course, this isn’t that natural, because you’re treating 万 as a mathematical constant and not a number :laughing:.

For Natural Counting:
Convert the numbers before the decimal place and add convert that at the end. For example, in this case we know that the .6 is actually 6000 or 6千 (6 sen), so that is what we add on the end. Hence, it’s 895万6千.

This is the one @trunklayer suggested.

(I thought I’d give a more in depth reply to help you do future conversions). :wink:


I’ve been using this website to practice and it’s really helped me listen out for the important parts:



Or just change the thousands separator to a ten-thousands separator:

8 956 000 → 895 6000

Works for any number.

76 843 571 461 874 → 76 8435 7146 1874 → 七十六兆八千四百三十五億七千百予十六万千八百七十四


you’re getting confused because in english we use a new word every 3 digits (thousand, million, etc.), and in japanese we use a new word every 4 digits (万、億、etc.).

so it’s not 8 million, 956 thousand. it’s 895 万 6 千 (895 tenthousands, 6000).


I wouldn’t classify that as inspection, but yeah. That’s a more concise reply than mine. :laughing:

They were most likely saying that although one says 千せん for 1,000 (and not 一千いっせん), you should say 一千万いっせんまん for 10,000,000 (and not 千万せんまん)

10,000,000円 = 一千万円 (いっせんまんえん)
1,000円 = 千円 (せんえん)
10,001,000円 = 一千万千円 (いっせんまんせんえん)

Quite tricky.


The other fun part about this is the way we count within the thousand-power words directly correlates to how to count in Japanese with the ten-thousand-power words.

The way we say a large number is “X hundred, X tens, X (Y)illion”, then “X hundred, X tens, X (Y-1)illion” - that is, we repeat the words “hundred” and “ten” (or, well… “-ty”) within each power of a thousand.

It’s the same in Japanese, except that “thousand” is added to the common pool, since the numbers are separated instead into powers of ten thousand. So it’s “X千X百X十X (Yth)-ten-thousand-power, X千X百X十X (Y-1th)-ten-thousand-power” and so forth.


From squinting at the numbers, I think I agree with your answer, but 6千 is pronounced ろくせん, isn’t it?


It seems that you’re correct. At least when I typed ‘rossen’ into the Japanese input editor, 6000 did not come up in kanji unlike when I typed ‘rokusen’.

1 Like

Hmm, that’s interesting.
I know that 600 would be ろっぴゃく、not ろくひゃく、so I thought the same would apply to thousands… :thinking:

1 Like

OP you might wanna check out this great Tofugu article about counting in Japanese, if you have further questions! ^>^


I kept reading 900 as くひゃく instead of きゅうひゃく for the longest time until I was corrected. :sweat_smile:


thanks everyone! I had a guess I had to use man and sen somehow, but since I never did such high numbers I was confused.

1 Like

This topic was automatically closed 14 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.