During the translation (Chinese to English) or writing of English, it always related to the numeric. And we should distinguish when we must translate the numeric with word and when translate with Arabic number. It is difficult to define and it’s reference is very little in current grammar books.
As a matter of fact, in English –speaking countries, there are some regulations about numeric’s writing by convention. Therefore see the regulations summarized below for reference.
1. In some countries such as England and America, their publisher follow a regulations when typesetting, the regulation is: the numeric range from 1 to 10 is written in word and more than 10 is written in Arabic number (sometimes make 100 as boundary), we can also use the regulation as a reference.
Eg. That table measures ten feet by five.
Eg. The traditional pattern of classroom experience at the college level brings the professor and a group of 20 to 30 students together for a 45-to-50-minute class session two or three times a week.
2. Use Arabic number to express the number of people will become concise and clear, but indeterminate amount and approximate value must be written in word to make appropriately.
Eg. There were 2000 people presented at the meeting.
Eg. Nearly forty thousand people took part in this meeting.
Eg. About two hundred students took part in the volunteer activity.
3. Some special numbers such as date、percentage and the numeric which is attaching units are always written in Arabic number.
Eg. Maximum swivel of table is l20.
Eg. 3rd May 2011或3 May 2011
You can enjoy a discount of 10 percent。
In the case of indeterminate amount, it can be written in word will more proper.
Eg. The speed of the bike is about five miles per hour.
Eg. It is at least ten yards away.
Eg. He hesitated for a moment or two to this suggestion.
Eg. I have warned you a hundred times。