As far as combining Math and English goes, mathematical phrases expressed in words can get confusing sometimes. It’s inevitable that we mix up their meanings or even what they imply. Like, is saying ‘x as many times as’ the same as saying ‘x times more than?’ Let’s see!
Difference Between ‘X Times As Many As’ and ‘X Times More Than’
The main difference between ‘X times as many as’ and ‘X times more than’ is that ‘x as many times as’ is a ratio while the latter indicates a difference. ‘More than’ means adding to the base, while ‘as many’ means multiplying the base by x.
To understand the difference between the two phrases better, let’s first dive into math terms. We say that ‘x times as many as’ is a ratio. A ratio shows a relation between two amounts. Let’s say the sentence goes ‘Derek has 5 times as many as Jamie’s apples.’ Here, we consider Jamie as the base, and Derek supposedly has 5 times more than the base.
This creates a ratio between Derek and Jamie of 5:1. Now, let’s say Jamie has 3 apples. To follow the ratio of 5:1, we multiply 3 by 5, giving us the amount of 15:3. This then means that Derek has 15 apples when Jamie has 3 apples.
On the other hand, we say that ‘X times more than’ is a difference between two quantities. A difference, in Math, is the result of subtracting two numbers, in this case, subtracting a smaller quantity from a bigger quantity. Following the sentence a while ago, if ‘Derek has 5 times more apples than Jamie,’ it means that the difference between Derek’s apples and Jamie’s apples should be 5 times how many apples Jamie has.
�Let’s say Jamie has 3 apples. 5 times 3 is 15. We add 15 to the base of 3 and we’ll get 18. Therefore, Derek has 18 apples. If we do the math, 18 minus 3 is 15, which is 5 times how many apples Jamie has. This then means that if Derek has 5 times more apples than Jamie, Derek has 18 apples when Jamie has 3.
Are ‘X Times As Many As’ and ‘X Times More Than’ Interchangeable?
‘X Times As Many As’ and ‘X Times More Than’ mean entirely two different things. ‘X times many as’ talks about ratios where we simply multiply the base, while the latter means adding the product to the base. Thus, in any given context, the two phrases are not interchangeable.
X Times As Many As
‘X times as many as’ means that the person has as many as the base multiplied by x. For example, if the phrase goes ‘Brent has 5 times as many as Julia’s,’ if Julia has 4, Julia’s amount is the base, and Brent’s amount is 4 times 5 or 20.
Below are examples of using ‘X times as many as’ in a sentence.
- I saw Ethan take 3 candies, and Lia take 4 times as many as Ethan.
- This means that Ethan has 3 candies and Lia has (4 x 3 = 12) 12 candies.
- I only bought two new pairs of shoes, while you bought twice as many as me.
- This means that ‘I’ bought 2 pairs, while ‘you’ bought (2 x 2 = 4) 4 pairs.
- I only packed 3 shirts, but Ricky packed 2 times as many as I did.
- This means that ‘I’ packed 3 shirts, while Ethan packed (3 x 2 = 6) 6 shirts.
- Can you lend me a spare? I only have one goggle while you have 5 times as many as I have.
- This means that ‘I’ only have one goggle, while ‘you’ have (1 x 5 = 5) 5 goggles.
- Shayne saved up to 5 times as much as Brianna’s savings which were 300 dollars.
- This means that Brianna saved up to 300 dollars, while Shayne saved up to (300 x 5 = 1500) 1500 dollars.
X Times More Than
‘X times more than’ means adding x times of the base to the base. For example, if the phrase goes ‘I have 3 times more than you,’ if I have 4 originally, you will have 3 times 4 added to the base of 4, which becomes 3×4= 12 +4 =16.
Below are examples of using ‘X times more than’ in a sentence.
- I have 3 times more red marbles than Janna who only has 6.
- This means that Janna has 6 marbles, while I have (6 x 3 = 18 + 6 = 24) 24 red marbles.
- She stayed up 4 times more hours than Rea who only stayed up for 2 hours.
- This means that Rea stayed up for 2 hours while ‘she’ stayed up tor (2 x 4 = 8 + 2 = 10) 10 hours.
- I rechecked my answers 3 times more than you did because you only rechecked once.
- This means that ‘you’ rechecked once while I rechecked (1 x 3 = 3 + 1 = 4) 4 times.
- Our family now has 2 times more debt than last year which was only 10,000 dollars.
- This means that last year, the family had a 10,000-dollar debt, and this year, the family now has a (10,000 x 2 = 20,000 + 10,000 = 30,000) 30,000-dollar debt.
- Trina has four times more owned pairs of shoes than I who only own three pairs.
- This means that I own three pairs while Trina owns (3 x 4 = 12 + 3 = 15) 15 pairs.
Which Is Used The Most?
According to the Google Ngram Viewer, ‘times more than’ is used more often than ‘times as many as.’ It is probably because there are more situations that call for comparison such as that in ‘times more than’ rather than ratios as that in ‘times as many as.’
‘X times as many as’ and ‘x times more than’ are two entirely different things. ‘X times as many as’ is simply a ratio that multiplies x to the base, while the latter is a difference that adds the product of x and the base to the base.
Martin holds a Master’s degree in Finance and International Business. He has six years of experience in professional communication with clients, executives, and colleagues. Furthermore, he has teaching experience from Aarhus University. Martin has been featured as an expert in communication and teaching on Forbes and Shopify. Read more about Martin here.