Ordinals and cardinals

John Camp john at c...
Sun Dec 1 22:43:01 GMT 2002

At 22:28 on 01 December 2002, David Bryant wrote:
> Is it just me, or does anyone else despise such poor English? 'on
> the second' or 'on number two', but NOT 'on the two'.

Gosh! Use of English on this list, eh? Actually, what we are talking
about here is usage, not good or bad English. It just happens that
ringers have normally used the ordinal number ("the second" or "the
eleventh") rather than the cardinal ("two" or "eleven") for most
purposes. This is not so, of course, when calling changes or putting
someone right ("Two! First whole turn!").

Perhaps, on this list, someone will know how traditional these usages

John Camp

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