AskDefine | Define five

Dictionary Definition

five adj : being one more than four [syn: 5, v]


1 the cardinal number that is the sum of four and one [syn: 5, V, cinque, quint, quintet, fivesome, quintuplet, pentad, fin, Phoebe, Little Phoebe]
2 a team that plays basketball [syn: basketball team]

User Contributed Dictionary



From etyl ang fif, from , from . Cognate with German fünf, Italian cinque, French cinq, Greek sc=Grek, Russian sc=Cyrl.


  • /faɪv/, /"faIv/
  • Rhymes: -aɪv

Cardinal number

  1. Two plus three. One plus four. Six minus one. The typical number of fingers on a hand, including the thumb. This many: •••••. Ordinal: fifth.
  2. Describing a set or group with five components.


five (numeral)
set or group with five components
  • Lithuanian: penkeri, penkerios


  1. The digit/figure 5.
  2. A five-dollar bill.
    Can anyone here change a five?
  3. five o'clock
  4. A five-minute rest.
    Take five, soldier.


  • Danish: femtal
  • Finnish: viitonen
  • French: cinq
  • German: fünf
  • Lithuanian: penketas
  • Polish: piątka
  • Russian: пятёрка (p'at'órka)
  • Swedish: femma
five-dollar bill
  • Danish: femmer (also used for the Danish 5-krone coin)
  • Finnish: viitonen, femma
  • German: Fünfer
  • Kurdish: پێنجی
  • Russian: пятёрка (p'at'órka)
five o'clock
five-minute rest

Extensive Definition

This article discusses the number five. For the year 5 AD, see 5. For other uses of 5, see 5 (disambiguation).
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Evolution of the glyph

The evolution of our modern glyph for five cannot be neatly traced back to the Brahmin Indians quite the same way it can for 1 to 4. Later on the Kushana and Gupta Indians had among themselves several different glyphs which bear no resemblance to the modern glyph. The Nagari and Punjabi took these glyphs and all came up with glyphs that look like a lowercase "h" rotated 180°. The Ghubar Arabs transformed the glyph in several different ways, coming up with glyphs that look more like 4s or 3s than 5s. It was from those characters that the Europeans finally came up with the modern 5, though from purely graphical evidence, it would be much easier to conclude that our modern 5 came from the Khmer .
While the shape of the 5 character has an ascender in most modern typefaces, in typefaces with text figures the character usually has a descender, as, for example, in * The Saros number of the solar eclipse series which began on April 4, 2720 BC and ended on May 24, 1422 BC. The duration of Saros series 5 was 1298.1 years, and it contained 73 solar eclipses.

Religion and culture

  • The five sacred Sikh symbols prescribed by Guru Gobind Singh are commonly known as Panj Kakars or the 'Five Ks' because they start with letter K representing Kakka in the Punjabi language. They are: Kesh (unshorn hair), Kangha (the comb), Kara (the steel bracelet), Kachh (the soldiers shorts), and Kirpan (the sword).
  • There are five basic "pillars" of Islam.
  • Muslims pray to Allah five times a day *In Islam, particularly Shia Islam, the Panjetan or the Five Holy Purified Ones are the members of Muhammad's family including: Muhammad, Ali, Fatima, Hasan, Husayn and is often symbolically represented by an image of the Khamsa.
  • The Torah contains five books—Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy—which are collectively called the Five Books of Moses, the Pentateuch (Greek for "five containers," referring to the scroll cases in which the books were kept), or Humash (חומש, Hebrew for "fifth")
  • The book of Psalms is arranged into five books, paralleling the Five Books of Moses.
  • The Khamsa, an ancient symbol shaped like a hand with five fingers, is used as a protective amulet by Jews
  • According to some traditions of Maya mythology, we are now living in the Fifth World.
  • In East Asian tradition, there are five elements: (water, fire, earth, wood and metal). The Japanese names for the days of the week, Tuesday through Saturday, come from these elements via the identification of the elements with the five planets visible with the naked eye. Also, the traditional Japanese calendar has a five-day weekly cycle that can be still observed in printed mixed calendars combining Western, Chinese-Buddhist and Japanese names for each weekday.
  • In some cultures there are five cardinal directions, including the center.
  • In Cantonese, "five" sounds like the word "not" (symbol: 唔). When five appears in front of a lucky number, e.g. "58", the result is considered unlucky.
  • According to various mythologies, the universe is comprised of five classical elements: water, earth, air, fire and ether.
  • In Greek Orthodox Christian mysticism, the number 5 symbolizes the Holy Spirit as the bearer of all life. In the monastic tradition of Mount Athos there exists a "hymn" to the Holy Spirit composed entirely and solely of repetitions of the word "pente" (Greek for "five")
  • In Discordianism, 5 is seen as a very important number as demonstrated in the Law of Fives and The Pentabarf, which contains five rules. Each page of the Principia Discordia, the primary religious document in Discordianism, is also labeled with 5 digits.




  • The resin identification code used in recycling to identify polypropylene.
  • In radio communication, the term "Five by five" is used to indicate perfect signal strength and clarity.
  • The Pentium, coined by Intel Corporation, is a fifth-generation x86 architecture microprocessor.
  • On most telephones, the 5 key is associated with the letters J, K, and L, but on the BlackBerry it is the key for G and H.
  • On almost all devices with a numeric keypad such as telephones, computers, etc., the 5 key has a raised dot or raised bar to make dialing easier. Persons who are blind or have low vision find it useful to be able to feel the keys of a telephone. All other numbers can be found with their relative position around the 5 button. (On computer keyboards, the 5 key of the numpad has the raised dot or bar, but the 5 key that shifts with % does not).
  • 5 is the most common number of gears for automobiles with manual transmission.

Miscellaneous fields

Five is:


  • Wells, D. The Penguin Dictionary of Curious and Interesting Numbers London: Penguin Group. (1987): 58 - 67
five in Old English (ca. 450-1100): Fīf
five in Arabic: 5 (عدد)
five in Official Aramaic (700-300 BCE): 5 (ܡܢܝܢܐ)
five in Guarani: Po
five in Aymara: Phisqa
five in Bulgarian: 5 (число)
five in Catalan: Cinc
five in Chuvash: 5 (хисеп)
five in Czech: 5 (číslo)
five in Corsican: 5 (numeru)
five in Welsh: Pump
five in Danish: 5 (tal)
five in Pennsylvania German: Fimf
five in German: Fünf
five in Erzya: 5 (вете)
five in Spanish: Cinco
five in Esperanto: Kvin
five in Basque: Bost
five in Persian: ۵ (عدد)
five in French: 5 (nombre)
five in Gan Chinese: 5
five in Galician: Cinco
five in Korean: 5
five in Igbo: Ise
five in Indonesian: 5 (angka)
five in Interlingua (International Auxiliary Language Association): 5 (numero)
five in Xhosa: Zintlanu
five in Italian: 5 (numero)
five in Hebrew: 5 (מספר)
five in Kinyarwanda: Gatanu
five in Haitian: 5 (nonm)
five in Kurdish: Pênc
five in Latin: Quinque
five in Luxembourgish: Fënnef
five in Lithuanian: 5 (skaičius)
five in Lombard: Nümar 5
five in Hungarian: 5 (szám)
five in Marathi: ५
five in Dutch: 5 (getal)
five in Japanese: 5
five in Norwegian: 5 (tall)
five in Norwegian Nynorsk: Talet 5
five in Central Khmer: ៥
five in Polish: 5 (liczba)
five in Portuguese: Cinco
five in Quechua: Pichqa
five in Russian: 5 (число)
five in Sicilian: Cincu
five in Simple English: Five
five in Slovenian: 5 (število)
five in Serbian: 5 (број)
five in Finnish: 5 (luku)
five in Swedish: 5 (tal)
five in Tagalog: 5 (bilang)
five in Thai: 5
five in Vietnamese: 5 (số)
five in Turkish: 5 (sayı)
five in Ukrainian: 5 (число)
five in Vlaams: 5 (getal)
five in Yiddish: 5 (נומער)
five in Contenese: 5
five in Chinese: 5

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

cast, company, complement, crew, eight, eleven, first string, first team, nine, platoon, reserves, rowing crew, second string, second team, squad, string, team, third string, varsity
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