Take the 2-minute tour ×
Spanish Language Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for students, teachers, and linguists wanting to discuss the finer points of the Spanish language. It's 100% free, no registration required.

In English 1886 would be pronounced "eighteen-eighty six." In Spanish, is there something similar? Or do people outright say:

El año mil ochocientos ochenta y seis

share|improve this question
2  
We say mil ochocientos ochenta y seis –  Laura Jun 19 '12 at 6:39
    
The only shortening of years I have ever heard were simply a decade as in "the 80's" would be "las ochentas" –  joseph4tw Dec 17 '12 at 19:07
add comment

3 Answers

up vote 5 down vote accepted

Yes, in Spanish there is generally no way to abbreviate the years. The only time it is used is referring to the years in the XX century. Example:

Do you remember that concert back in eighty-nine?

Recuerdas ese concierto en el ochenta y nueve?

Other than in that case, the full year is pronounced. Even for this century's years.

Do you remember that concert in two thousand and five?

Recuerdas ese concierto en el dos mil cinco?

share|improve this answer
    
The question is not about abbreviations in years, but saying years. –  JoulSauron Jun 19 '12 at 11:21
    
Yes, I understood that. In my answer I was also talking about the way to say it verbally ;) –  Rorok_89 Jun 19 '12 at 15:06
    
@JoulSauron: "Nineteen ninety-eight" and "Two thousand four" are verbal abbreviations in English. The question is asking if this is possible in Spanish. –  Flimzy Jun 21 '12 at 4:35
    
@Flimzy I've always thought that they were the actual ways of saying years. Do you mean then that pronouncing the whole number in a year is correct? –  JoulSauron Jun 23 '12 at 17:50
    
@JoulSauron: The longer forms are correct, too. For example "Nineteen hundred and ninety-eight." We do the same thing with addresses. The address "1998 Somestreet" could be "Nineteen ninety-eight somestreet," "Nineteen hundred ninety-eight Somestreet" or "One thousand nine hundred and ninety-eight Somestreet." The last form is rarely, if ever, used with years in modern writing or speech, though. –  Flimzy Jun 23 '12 at 18:25
add comment

The way to say years is the same as it would be a normal number, there is no distinction whether the number is a quantity or a year. So you are right with your example:

El año 1886.

El año mil ochocientos ochenta y seis.

share|improve this answer
2  
That's right. I've also heard argentinians saying 'mil ocho ochenta y seis', but I'm not sure how common this pronunciation is. –  cgc Jun 19 '12 at 13:13
2  
Just for completeness' sake I will add that in Spanish there is no "shortcut" to say numbers larger than 1000. For example: 1200 can be "one thousand two hundred" or "twelve hundred". There is no such thing in Spanish. That number, as a year or as a number, will always be "mil doscientos". –  Sergio Romero Jun 19 '12 at 14:43
add comment

In Puerto Rico, we use a short form like "mil ocho ochenta y seis"

share|improve this answer
2  
Also in Argentina - but only coloquially –  leonbloy Jun 22 '12 at 18:44
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.