Khmer numbers

How to Count in Khmer

Last updated on September 28th, 2017

Counting and knowing a few numbers in Khmer always comes in handy. Taking the moto-dup, buying souvenirs at the market, making sure the bus leaves at the scheduled time, ordering the right number of beers etc.

Khmer numerals have been used since at least the 7th century. And if you walk around old wats and temples, you’ll notice that they were already chiseled on our old stones.

Khmer has the particularity of using a bi-quinary counting system (base 5 and 10), which makes it easier for visitors to pick up. For a quick start, you only need to learn numbers from 0 to 5 and multiples of 10. That’s only 16 Khmer words to be able to count to 1000!

Numbers from 6 to 9 are just combinations of numbers from 0 to 5. For example, instead of saying 6, you say “5 and 1”. Seven becomes “5 and 2” and so forth.

If you speak Hokkien or Cantonese, you’ll notice that multiple of tens from 20 to 90 sound very similar to your own dialects. Those fluent in Pali and Sanskrit may also find some familiar sounds.

Happy counting!

 

Khmer numbers from 0 to 5

Soun – 0
Muoy – 1
Pii – 2
Bei – 3
Buon – 4
Pram – 5

 

Khmer numbers from 6 to 10

Pram muoy – 6 (5 and 1)
Pram pii – 7 (5 and 2)
Pram bei – 8 (5 and 3)
Pram buon – 9 (5 and 4)
Dap – 10
Dap muoy – 11 (10 and 1)
Dap pii – 12 (10 and 2)
Dap bei – 13 (10 and 3)
Dap buon – 14 (10 and 4)

 

Khmer Numbers from 20 to 100

Mpei – 20
Sam sep – 30
Sae sep – 40
Ha sep – 50
Hok sep – 60
Chet sep – 70
Paet sep – 80
Kao sep – 90
Moy roy – 100
Pi roy – 200
Pi roy dop pram – 215
Buon roy chet sep pram bei – 478
Pram pii roy pram buon – 709

 

Khmer Numbers from 1000 to 10 million

Muoy poan – 1,000
Muoy muen – 10,000
Muoy saen – 100,000
Mouy lean – 1 million
Mouy kaot – 10 million
Dop pram mouy lean hok sep saen buon muen kao sep – 16,640,090

 

If you’re eager for a chit chat with the locals, check out our post on useful Khmer words and expressions!