While in English we have a "quarter" and a " half" as two words which denote fractions, in Hindi we have separate words for half ('Aadha'), Quarter ('Sava'), three-quarters ('Pauna'), One and a half ('Dedh') and two and a half ('Dhai').

How may separate words do we have for fractions in other languages?

  • 1
    Quarter and half are also coinage words, as are dime, nickel, and penny in the US, and farthing, ha'penny, and no doubt others as well in the U.K. Familiar and frequently used fractions will often develop their own terms, and fractions are frequent in trade. Then there is the metric system and scientific nomenclature as a whole.
    – jlawler
    Oct 13 '13 at 18:23
  • 1
    See this related question. Oct 14 '13 at 0:24
  • 1
    @OtavioMacedo copied a comment from the post referred : "This really doesn't answer your question at all, but it's not the case everywhere that "quarter" and the like are obviously related to their cardinal counterparts crosslinguistically. As you mention, "fourth" has a much more obvious relation than "quarter". But, South Asian languages usually have distinct words for 3/4, 1 1/2, and 2 1/2 (poune, deR, and aRai in Bangla), none of which seem to be related to any of the plausible cognates (ek do tin car `one, two, three, four') – dustinalfonso ". The point in question.
    – ARi
    Oct 21 '13 at 5:49
  • @jlawler " Familiar and frequently used fractions will often develop their own terms" ... so it would be interesting to compare languages on this aspect.
    – ARi
    Nov 4 '13 at 11:38
  • @jlawler Could add bit to the list of coinage words related to fractions. This is from "pieces of eight" of Spanish dollars.
    – igelkott
    Apr 8 '14 at 7:48

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