See also: Fifth


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English numbers (edit)
 ←  4 5 6  → 
    Cardinal: five
    Ordinal: fifth
    Latinate ordinal: quintary, quinary
    Adverbial: five times
    Multiplier: fivefold
    Latinate multiplier: quintuple
    Distributive: quintuply
    Collective: fivesome
    Multiuse collective: quintuplet, pentuplet
    Greek or Latinate collective: pentad
    Greek collective prefix: penta-
    Latinate collective prefix: quinque-
    Fractional: fifth
    Latinate fractional prefix: quintant-
    Elemental: quintuplet, pentuplet
    Greek prefix: pempto-
    Number of musicians: quintet
    Number of years: quinquennium, lustrum

Alternative formsEdit


PIE word

From Middle English fifthe, fifte, fift, from Old English fīfta (fifth), from Proto-Germanic *fimftô (fifth) or *femftô, equivalent to five +‎ -th. Cognate with Scots fift, fyft (fifth), North Frisian fyfde (fifth), West Frisian fyfde (fifth), Dutch vijfde (fifth), Low German fifte, föfte, füfte (fifth), German fünfte (fifth), Danish femte (fifth), Swedish femte (fifth), Icelandic fimmta (fifth).



fifth (not comparable)

  1. The ordinal form of the number five.


  • 5th, Vth; (in names of monarchs and popes) V, V.

Derived termsEdit



fifth (plural fifths)

  1. The person or thing in the fifth position.
  2. One of five equal parts of a whole.
  3. The fifth gear of an engine.
  4. A quantity of liquor equal to one-fifth of a gallon, or, more commonly, 750 milliliters (that is, three quarters of a liter).
  5. (music) The musical interval between one note and another seven semitones higher (the fifth note in the major/minor scale)
    • 1984, Leonard Cohen (lyrics and music), “Hallelujah”, in Various Positions:
      Now I've heard there was a secret chord / That David played, and it pleased the Lord / But you don't really care for music, do ya? / It goes like this, the fourth, the fifth
  6. The fifth voice in a polyphonic melody.


  • (one of five equal parts):

Derived termsEdit



fifth (third-person singular simple present fifths, present participle fifthing, simple past and past participle fifthed)

  1. (music) To sing in the fifth voice in a polyphonic melody.
    • 1996 Music in Early English Religious Drama: Minstrels playing page 510
      Another extension of strict organum is 'fifthing'. Fifthing is a note-against- note method of creating a two-part texture by improvising a second voice over the given tune, starting and ending each musical phrase at the octave and proceeding mainly in fifths above the tune at others times.
    • 1978 Discant and the Theory of Fifthing
      Each of these three groups contributes some special insight into the nature of fifthing and the context in which it was practiced.
  2. (transitive) To support something fifth, after four others have already done so.
  3. (transitive, nonstandard) To divide by five.