How do people understand what is the numeric characteristic of the object? Of course, the simple way is to use numerals. We can call to a numeral and link it with some noun, thus, people will understand that there is an amount shown by a numeral of the concept shown by a noun. But it is rather uncomfortable to use near every noun an additional numeral. That’s why there is a concept of a number.
Number shows what is the amount of some concept without using numeral before the noun.
Number is a grammar property of the word, its alteration. That means when we change number of the word, we change the word itself and not add some additional words or particles around the word we are speaking about.
There are three numbers in Novoslovnica: Singular, Dual and Plural. Singular and Plural are familiar to an English speaker. Dual is rather peculiar, so we should take additional account on it.
Dual number is used when we speak about a pair of something – hands, legs, eyes etc. of one person. Two-doors gates, two boolean values, two antipodes etc. In these cases we use a dual number. Dual depends on the word which is spoken, that is why we cannot determine a static rule about choosing a form for a dual number. We can get a dual form of the word by using a declension function with a type of declension corresponding with the word.
The last form we should speak about is a counting form. Counting form is used with the nouns. It occurs when we use the noun with the numerals “Two”, “Three” or “Four” (cardinal numbers). The counting form is equal to a dual number in writing.
- Dva doma (two houses) – counting form
- Doma (two ones) – dual number
- Tri doma (three houses) – counting form
- Domy (three ones) – plural number