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Count to 99 in Spanish

Let’s learn the rest of our Spanish numbers from 80 to 99! We’ll learn the Spanish words for eighty and ninety, and we’ll get lots of practice using our numbers in real-life Spanish sentences.

Full Podcast Episode


Me gustaría cualquiera.

Intro: Join us on a rigorous, step-by-step journey to fluency. I’m Timothy and this is LearnCraft Spanish.

Today we’re going to work on numbers and idioms, and we’ll start by working our way all the way from 80 to 99 in Spanish. The word for “eighty” is ochenta, and the word for “ninety” is noventa. So compare ocho with ochenta, and compare nueve with noventa. Here are a couple of examples:

There are eighty-one or eighty-two boxes.

Hay ochenta y una u ochenta y dos cajas.

My grandmother is ninety-one years old.

Mi abuela tiene noventa y un años.

Let’s jump in and practice with these. Try to predict the Spanish.

You only have eight-nine dollars on that card.

Tienes solo ochenta y nueve dólares en esa tarjeta.

She’s ninety-six years old and I’m eighty-four.

Ella tiene noventa y seis años y yo tengo ochenta y cuatro.

We already listened to that like eight-three times.

Ya escuchamos eso como ochenta y tres veces.

The ninety-one people like riding the train.

A las noventa y una personas les gusta andar en tren.

She goes back to that place because she only went in the year eighty-one.

Regresa a ese lugar porque solo fue en el año ochenta y uno.

At that school there are eighty-one boys and ninety-two girls.

En esa escuela hay ochenta y un chicos y noventa y dos chicas.

My grandparents are between eighty-seven and ninety-eight years old.

Mi abuelos tienen entre ochenta y siete y noventa y ocho años.

Don’t ever come back! She’s ninety-nine and doesn’t want to see you anymore.

¡No regreses nunca! Ella tiene noventa y nueve y ya no quiere verte.

Now there are eighty-eight people in that company, but before there were ninety-five.

Ahora hay ochenta y ocho personas en esa compañía, pero antes había noventa y cinco.

Next, let’s do a comprehension quiz. We’ll present a bunch of Spanish sentences that use these new numbers, along with a bunch of other numbers that we’ve learned; see if you can understand what’s being said and predict the English translation.

No sabía que ellos tenían noventa y uno.

I didn’t know they were ninety-one.

Quiero que las ochenta y una personas regresen.

I want the eight-one people to come back.

Tengo sesenta y uno y ellos tienen ochenta y nueve.

I’m sixty-one and they are eighty-nine.

¿Tienes ochenta y ocho años? Ella tiene noventa y nueve.

You’re eighty-eight years old? She’s ninety-nine.

Tengo treinta y ocho cosas, pero ellos tienen como ochenta y dos.

I have thirty-eight things, but they have like eighty-two.

Esa persona ha estado en el ejército desde el año ochenta y cinco.

That person has been in the army since the year eighty-five.

¿De verdad tienes noventa y siete? Pensé que tenías noventa y ocho.

Are you really ninety–seven? I thought you were ninety-eight.

Los muchachos de dieciocho años van a regresar pronto.

The eighteen-year-old teenagers are going to come back soon.

Había noventa y un hombres, pero ahora hay veintisiete.

There were ninety-one men, but now there are twenty-seven.

Mis amigos, que tienen cuarenta y dos años, están andando en tren.

My friends, who are forty-two years old, are riding the train.

Hay noventa y tres cosas, pero dijiste que tenías noventa y cuatro.

There are ninety-three things, but you said you had ninety-four.

Lo haremos cuando esa persona de ochenta y seis años regrese.

We’ll do it when that eighty-six-year old-person returns.

Next, let’s revisit the word cualquiera, which we’ve learned as a pronoun to mean “anyone” or “whichever”. For example:

I don’t care, I would like whichever of those boxes.

No me importa, me gustaría cualquiera de esas cajas.

In these situations, cualquiera is a pronoun that represents a noun, either masculine or feminine, but in either case it still ends with the letter A. Here’s a slight variation on that sentence using the masculine noun auto:

I don’t care, I would like whichever of those cars.

No me importa, me gustaría cualquiera de esos autos.

The weird thing is that in some rare circumstances, cualquiera can also actually be used as an adjective, right after a noun. Here’s an example of how:

I would like just any box.

Me gustaría una caja cualquiera.

So what we’ve done here in Spanish is we’ve used an indefinite article, in this case una, and then a noun, and then cualquiera. And what cualquiera is doing here is essentially the same thing that the adjective cualquier does, as we learned way back in episode 98. So this sentence basically could have been:

I would like any box.

Me gustaría cualquier caja.

But there’s a subtle difference. When we instead phrase it as una caja cualquiera, we’re placing even more emphasis on the fact that we really don’t want anything special; truly any box will do.

In fact, this use of cualquiera is often used in insults to describe someone of disreputable character. We won’t practice that use on this podcast, but we will get a little bit of use with cualquiera after nouns. In our quizzing, you’ll know to choose cualquiera after a noun instead of cualquier before a noun if I phrase the English as “just any”. So for example, if I say “any car”, the Spanish will say cualquier auto, but if I say “just any car”, it’ll be un auto cualquiera.

Let’s practice this just a little bit.

I’d want just any table.

Quisiera una mesa cualquiera.

I want you to return tomorrow, not just any day.

Quiero que regreses mañana, no un día cualquiera.

I’d like to meet someone like that, not just any person.

Me gustaría conocer a alguien así, no a una persona cualquiera.

Next, let’s learn two new idioms. The phrase está por demás means something like “it’s needless” or “it’s superfluous”. Here’s an example:

Needless to say after that he lost his job.

Está por demás decir que después de eso perdió su trabajo.

Literally “it is by the rest to say that after that he lost his job”. It’s very common to start a sentence with está por demás decir.

And then another idiom: por otro lado, literally “by the other side”, is a common way to say “on the other hand”. For example:

On the other hand, it might be nice.

Por otro lado, podría ser bueno.

Let’s practice translating está por demás as “it’s needless” and por otro lado as “on the other hand”.

Needless to say, he’s crazy.

Está por demás decir que él está loco.

On the other hand, if we go to that place, we’re going to miss the party.

Por otro lado, si vamos a ese lugar, vamos a perdernos la fiesta.

It’s needless to say it, but we all know she won’t come back.

Está por demás decirlo, pero todos sabemos que ella no regresará.

I don’t know if I’d live in this house, but on the other hand, I like your style.

No sé si viviría en esta casa, pero por otro lado, me gusta tu estilo.

For more practice with any of this, feel free to dig deeper at LCSPodcast.com/203. Or if you’re ready, let’s go on to today’s final quiz.

Why does she carry that bag every time she rides the train?

¿Por qué lleva esa bolsa cada vez que anda en tren?

He’s eighty-three. On the other hand, they are eighty-six.

Él tiene ochenta y tres. Por otro lado, ellos tienen ochenta y seis.

She has already returned, but I don’t know when I return.

Ella ya ha regresado, pero yo no sé cuándo regreso.

They want to come see me and talk about all those papers.

Quieren venir a verme y hablar de todos esos papeles.

(plural) Come back! Needless to say, you can’t be outside now.

¡Regresen! Está por demás decir que no pueden estar afuera ahora.

You ride your car like ninety-one times per month.

Andas en tu coche como noventa y una veces por mes.

We need more meat because there are going to be eighty-one men.

Necesitamos más carne porque va a haber ochenta y un hombres.

(formal) Come back! I still haven’t given you your gift.

¡Regrese! Todavía no le he dado su regalo.

We had no camera; still, we had a good time.

No teníamos cámara; igual, lo pasamos bien.

They are eighty-nine and she’s ninety-eight.

Ellos tienen ochenta y nueve y ella tiene noventa y ocho.

When she returns, in ninety-nine days, we’ll do it.

Cuando regrese, en noventa y nueve días, lo haremos.

Come back! I didn’t give you your ninety-five dollars.

¡Regresa! No te di tus noventa y cinco dólares.

There were too many people, like eighty-eight.

Había demasiadas personas, como ochenta y ocho.

They want just any car, but on the other hand, they don’t have any money.

Quieren un auto cualquiera, pero por otro lado, no tienen dinero.

Needless to say, the government will not do anything.

Está de más decir que el gobierno no hará nada.

He returned yesterday and gave us gifts, like a sword that is worth a lot.

Regresó ayer y nos dio regalos, como una espada que vale mucho.

I’ll return when I can give her that letter.

Regresaré cuando pueda darle esa carta.

I returned ninety-seven days ago, not ninety-one.

Regresé hace noventa y siete días, no noventa y uno.

Walk by foot and go to just any place!

¡Anda a pie y ve a un lugar cualquiera!

We were standing for like ninety-four minutes.

Estuvimos de pie como noventa y cuatro minutos.

We’re going to be able to do it in like eighty-two hours.

Vamos a poder hacerlo como en ochenta y dos horas.

For more practice with all of this, go to LCSPodcast.com/203.

In tomorrow’s episode, we’ll learn lots of new nouns to talk about events or actions, including the words for “project”, “task”, “meeting”, and “surprise”.

This show is brought to you by LearnCraftSpanish.com. The Spanish voice in this episode was our coach Michael Agudelo. Our music was performed by the Seattle Marimba Quartet, and I’m Timothy, encouraging you to do the hard work of learning Spanish. Acquiring a second language is one of the most fulfilling things you can do, so start your fluency journey today at LCSPodcast.com.

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