I could only find десяток and девяток. What is the range of numbers from 1 to 10 for this numeric form? Is десяток merely a declined form for десятка?

4 Answers 4


The group nouns for animate sentient beings are as follows (governed by Plural Genitive and works with Neutrum and Masculine words only): двое, трое, четверо, пятеро, шестеро, семеро. Then there are more productive adverbial forms (like вдвоём, вшестером, всемером, ввосьмером, etc., but I guess they might be a little bit outside of the scope of your question).

For Feminine nouns, usual Slavic Counting is applied.

The group nouns for both animate (regardless on whether sentient or not) and inanimate objects are as follows: пара (двойка is usually applied either as a word for a school mark or a suit type), тройка, четвёрка, пятёрка, шестёрка, семёрка, восьмёрка, девятка, десяток, there is no specific word for eleven objects, then come дюжина (12), двадцатка (20), тридцатка (30), then there is a gap for 40 followed by пол-сотни (50) and сотня (100).

Otherwise, standard compound nouns are applied (NB: the post-decimal numbers 2 and 1 should correlate in genders, e. g. сорок один год, сорок одна лошадь, сорок одно окно).


Девяток is a declined form (feminine девятка -> plural девятки -> genitive case девяток), while десяток has its own meaning (ten pieces of smth.) and just coincides in spelling with that form (десятка in plural + in genitive case).

In the meaning and form of десяток, there's no range of numbers, it is only possible to mention пара (inform. 2 pieces, две штуки), пяток (very informally, пять штук, 5 pieces you buy), полдюжины (obsolete, 6 штук) - that's all.

A related discussion:

Express "ten" in Russian: difference between десять, десятка, десяток

  • On what principle do you list only полдюжины but not дюжины or полсотни?
    – J-mster
    Dec 23, 2017 at 11:55
  • Strictly speaking пара may only be used with things that come in pairs, like boots etc. However, almost no-one respects this rule these days.
    – AlexVB
    Dec 23, 2017 at 13:44
  • 1
    @J-mster Дюжина (as well as полсотни) is out of the suggested range 1-10. The mentioned words can be used as measure units - same as десяток. This is different from the usage of десятка and related words (единица, двойка... девятка) which just can be combined with some nouns to describe a group consisting of some number of people or things. But it's not the same: you can buy десяток яиц, not десятку or семёрку, etc. яиц.
    – Alex_ander
    Dec 23, 2017 at 15:10
  • @ AlexVB I agree, and that is why I originally added the inform. marking. Still, expressions like "пару дней", "пару раз", etc. are widely used colloquially.
    – Alex_ander
    Dec 23, 2017 at 15:16

For groups of animate objects of one kind/category Russian employs the name of the corresponding digit

пятёрка всадников
тройка друзей
великолепная семёрка

except for единица аnd двойка (because there's пара), and for a group of 10 beings десяток will rather be used instead of десятка

Although admittedly it is more of a literary form and has limited use confined to a set of familiar or tested cases. Not every such phrase will sound natural.


Same appearance, not always same meaning. Such forms and similar number designations have often special uses.

  1. Единица — mostly as oldisch worst school grade, from "1", obviously. Also: a unit. Боевая единица – a military unit.
  2. Двойка - again, the worst currently used school grade. Can be used as "pair of something", but there is also пара, as mentioned above.
  3. Тройка - triplet. Mostly the three horses in a row in the same carriage. I bet, you have seen the pictures. Эх тройка, птица-тройка, куда же ты так несешься?
  4. Четверка - quadruple.
  5. Пятерка. Both 4 and 5 can be perceived as school grades that go up to 5. I think, there is a chain of markets called "Пятерочка", a dimutive. I perceive simply пятерка depending on context either as best grade or a group of five. Also a money bill of 5.
  6. Шестерка. Has a derogatory meaning of a smallish criminal helper from the criminal argo, wide spread in the 90s and somewhat established in the informal conversational language. Before that, aside from, "a group of six", the 2106 model of Lada. Mentioned above: oldisch spoken language: полдюжины, that's of quantity only.
  7. Семерка. A group of seven, the number seven, I recall no extra meanings. there was a cheap alcoholic brewage in Soviet time called 777, so три семерки.
  8. Восьмерка. Dito.
  9. Девятка. Dito, maybe also the 9 at a shooting exercise.
  10. Десятка. Dito, also with shooting. Also a money bill of value 10.

I know spontanously no such construct with 11. 12 is дюжина, there is also 13 — чертова дюжина, although more conversational. 20 with двадцатка and 50 with пятидесятка is for me purely a money bill designations, and not those of a written language.

  • 50 — пятьдесят, but also полста, esp. in military radio exchange.
  • 100 — стольник (money), also сотка – rather in designations, but also for money: А потом сотки подтянулись, так мы и выжили. (on appearance of СУ-100 on the battlefield); — Почем пластинка Битлов? / — Сотка! (from bootleg music trade in 60s-70s); сто грамм, стопка — a vodka dosage.
  • 500 — пятьсот, but also полтысячи.
  • 1000 — тысяча, very old, not in modern language: тьма, modern jargon: штука, esp. of money, somewhat oldisch jargon, unsure: кусок.
  • 1 000 000 — миллион, jargon: лимон
  • 1 000 000 000 — миллиард, jargon: лярд.

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