a cardinal number, 10 plus 2.
a symbol for this number, as 12 or XII.
a set of this many persons or things.
the Twelve, the 12 apostles chosen by Christ.
amounting to 12 in number.

before 900; Middle English twelve, inflected form of twelf, Old English twelfe literally, (ten and) two leave, i.e., two left over; cognate with Old Frisian twelef, twelf, Old High German zwelif, Old Norse tōlf, Gothic twalif; compare Lithuanian dvýlika; see two, leave1, eleven Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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World English Dictionary
twelve (twɛlv)
1.  See also number the cardinal number that is the sum of ten and two
2.  a numeral, 12, XII, etc, representing this number
3.  something represented by, representing, or consisting of 12 units
4.  Also called: twelve o'clock noon or midnight
5.  a.  amounting to twelve: twelve loaves
 b.  See also dozen (as pronoun): twelve have arrived Related: duodecimal, dodeca-
Related: duodecimal, dodeca-
[Old English twelf; related to Old Frisian twelif, Old High German zwelif, Old Norse tolf, Gothic twalif]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. twelf, lit. "two left" (over ten), from P.Gmc. *twa-lif-, a compound of the root of two + *lif-, root of the verb leave (see eleven). Cf. O.S. twelif, O.N. tolf, O.Fris. twelef, M.Du. twalef, Du. twaalf, O.H.G. zwelif, Ger. zwölf, Goth.
twalif. Outside Gmc., an analogous formation is Lith. drylika, with second element -lika "left over."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences for twelve
Chapter twelve summary ransom walked back twenty paces into the wood and found
  his enemy.
They took about twelve days to build depending on how big the structure was
  going to be.
They followed immediately after the twelve voting members of the signature in
The church had been without a head for twelve months all but a day.
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