"Gli animali bevono acqua."
Translation:The animals drink water.
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Gli is if the first letter of the following word begins with a vowel, z or s and a consonant. i is used if the first letter of the word is a consonant. This site explains it clearly: http://www.bbc.co.uk/languages/italian/language_notes/il.html
'Gli' should be pronounced as "l'yee". Difficult to get this sound right when it's standalone or begins a word as the 'l' part and the 'yee' part really belong to two separate syllables but consequently easier when in the middle, eg 'luglio' (= lul'yeeo), or at the end, eg 'degli' (= del'yee) of a word.
Ok, sometimes it is optional to put an indefinite article, but, there are other times when it is not optional. I know because when I forget to put in the article, Duolingo marks it wrong. --- Are there some rules that show when including the article is mandatory and when it is optional or wrong to do so? For instance, I got the following wrong for not putting an article: Lui ha l’acqua. (In Basic 2- Lesson 4 of 5) Yet Duolingo included several examples in Food Lesson 1 - Io bevo latte. Food Lesson 3 - Non mangio manzo, Food Lesson 6: Io cucino pesce, & Plurals Lessons 1-3 and elsewhere, where, Duolingo itself does not use the articles, for example: Le gate mangiano pane, etc. Thanks!
When should we use the for gli and when we shouldn't? for example in a similar example "io non mangio gli animal", we shouldn't use the but here we have to use it. Or in this sentence "i pesci bevono acqua" duolingo says the correct answer is "fish" not the fish! Can somebody please explain the rules?