Style guides differ on some points involving the use of **numerals** (i.e., for example, *16* and *44* instead of *sixteen* and *forty-four*) in texts, but there are two rules on which most agree: (1) Spell all integers from zero to ten. (2)** **Use numerals for numbers 11 and above**. **Some publications make the cut at nine instead of ten, but most do have a consistent policy.

In practice, there are a few common exceptions—namely:

(a) Numerals are usually used for all numbers in texts involving math, formulas, or calculations.

(b) Numerals are used for measurements—for example:

Mr. Blake, who is described as being 6 feet 8 inches tall and weighing 230 pounds, has 11 prior arrests … [Wall Street Journal]

(c) Substitute words for long rows of zeros, especially *million*, *billion*, and so on (many publications don’t spell out *thousand*). Use numerals for one through ten when they precede *million*, *billion*, etc.—for example:

Macquarie Group Ltd. expects production to drop a further 4 million tons this year. [

Bloomberg]

(d) Spell out all numbers that begin sentences (except when the number is a year)—for example:

Two hundred and fifty years ago Samuel Johnson disparaged “an unnecessary word which is creeping into the language”. [

The Guardian]

(e) Use numerals for scores—for example:

The Stars pounded their way out of a three-goal hole for a 4-3 victory in a shootout at American Airlines Center. [

Chicago Sun-Times]

What about ages of people?