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numbers: governmental and historical designations

Follow the guidelines below in deciding how to write numbers associated with governmental, military and historical designations.

Dynasties and governing bodies

Write out numbers of dynasties, governing bodies, and sessions of Parliament or Congress as ordinals:

  • Twenty-fourth Dynasty
  • Fifth Republic
  • Third Reich
  • First International
  • Thirty-second Parliament
  • Ninety-seventh Congress

Political and administrative divisions

Write out ordinal numbers below 100 designating political and administrative divisions:

  • Fifth Ward
  • Tenth Circuit Court
  • Fifteenth Precinct
  • Twenty-second District

Military units

Designations of large military units, especially in a foreign or historical context, may be written out in ordinals:

  • Sixth Fleet
  • First Canadian Army

Otherwise, use cardinal numerals:

  • 5 Combat Engineer Regiment
  • 422 Tactical Helicopter squadron

Historical and biblical references

Write out numbers in historical, biblical or formal references:

  • the Third World
  • the Ten Commandments
  • the Twelve Apostles
  • the Thirteen Colonies