twelve

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English[edit]

English cardinal numbers
11 12 13
    Cardinal : twelve
    Ordinal : twelfth
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Alternative forms[edit]

  • Arabic numerals: 12
  • Roman numerals: XII

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English, from Old English twelf, from Proto-Germanic *twalif, an old compound of *twa- (two) and *-lif (left over), from Proto-Indo-European *leikw- (leave, remain). Compare West Frisian tolve, Dutch twaalf, German zwölf, Danish tolf, Norwegian tolv.

Pronunciation[edit]

Numeral[edit]

twelve

  1. The cardinal number occurring after eleven and before thirteen, represented in Arabic numerals as 12 and in Roman numerals as XII.
    There are twelve months in a year.

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Noun[edit]

twelve (plural twelves)

  1. A group of twelve items.
    Fractions would be a little easier if we counted by twelves.
  2. A twelve-bore gun.
    • 1982, Lawrence Durrell, Constance, Faber & Faber 2004 (Avignon Quintet), p. 880:
      In this way Von Esslin ‘inherited’ two fine hammerless twelves which he used once or twice for duck on the Camargue.

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