Reflecting on the Number 14: An Auspicious Age for The Editing Company

by Michael Bedford

Published at 2021-09-08

The Editing Company is celebrating its 14th year of editorial excellence, and, to mark this milestone, I’m investigating the cultural, numerological, linguistic, and mathematical significance of the number 14.


“Mathematics is the art of giving the same name to different things.”

-Henri Poincaré


Mathematics was never my best subject, so I’ll keep this section brief and, I hope, relatively simple. Unlike the numbers two, three, five, and seven, 14 is a composite, rather than a prime, number. This means that, in addition to itself and one, 14 can be divided by at least one other number—for the record, 14 is also divisible by the numbers seven and two.


Prime and composite numbers represent one level of mathematical aptitude, but beyond that the mathematical significance of 14 gets too theoretically dense for me to follow. For instance, a quick Google search reveals that 14 is the first even nontotient, a Catalan number, and a Companion Pell number, but I’ll leave the explanation of these terms to the more knowledgeable sources accessible through the hyperlinks above—the brain of this Arts Major is already starting to hurt.



Poetry and Measurements in the Sixteenth Century


When students of English literature or drama, such as myself, hear the number 14, we’re more likely to think of the number of lines in a sonnet than we are of Pell numbers. In fact, the number 14 would have been a relatively common number for the most celebrated composer of sonnets, William Shakespeare, who would have been familiar with the Imperial system of weights and measures. There may be 12 inches in a foot but there are 14 pounds in one stone, and, employing a term of measurement which was much trendier in Shakespeare’s time than in ours, there are 14 days in a fortnight—a contraction of “fourteen nights.”


Historical and mathematical references to the number 14 provide great fodder for trivia tournaments, but what about 14’s numerological significance?



Numerology on the Number 14


Numerology represents another pastime, much like solving math problems, of which I have little experience, but I’m willing to give it the old college try. A visit to revealed some interesting information about the number 14: it represents a dynamic energy that is versatile and worldly. Sounds like The Editing Company to me! Further reading, however, reveals that the number 14 must be a part of one’s birthdate for its specific energies to influence one’s character or destiny. One wonders, then, what a numerologist would make of the fact that The Editing Company opened its doors in 2007, after all 2 X 007 = 14!



Older and Wiser but Not Slowing Down


In many ways, turning 14 marks a developmental milestone. In Canada, 14-year-olds gain the dubious privilege of being able to watch 14A movies. In the United States, 14-year-olds gain the right to emancipate themselves from their parents, given sufficient legal reason of course. And, in Europe, 14 is the most common age at which citizens begin to bear criminal responsibility for their actions. Of course, people and businesses age at very different speeds, with businesses usually clearing those stressful coming-of-age moments within the first few months of opening their doors. Applying that logic—and considering that most small businesses tend to fold within just five years of opening—The Editing Company’s 14-year history presents as the impressive legacy it is.


The past two years, especially, have provided everyone with hard lessons about the importance of adaptability and perseverance.  The Editing Company may have come of age years ago, but at 14 years in business and counting, The Editing Company continues to age gracefully, always providing high-quality editorial services to new and loyal clients alike.


For more information on what The Editing Company has been up to for the past 14 years, don’t forget to check out the Recent Projects page, which shows recent editing, proofreading, indexing, and page & layout design projects. And, if you’re interested in getting a quote, you can do so here.



Michael Bedford is a freelance editor, copywriter, and performer living in Stoney Creek, Ontario. He can be reached at 



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