"Yes, the man is calm."
Translation:Oui, l'homme est calme.
"Homme" has a mute H, so "le" is changed to 'l'", to avoid the vowel sound conflict between "le" [luh] and "homme" [om].
Something comparable happens in English with "an hour", to avoid the vowel sound conflict between "a" and "hour".
"Le homme" is improper French.
"Le" is pronounced [luh] and the first sound in "homme" is [o]. The vowel sound conflict between [uh] and [o] is avoided by eliding (remove the vowel and replace it with an apostrophe) the article.
The same applies to "la", with "l'eau" instead of "la eau".
Elisions are used with a number of little words: je, ne, me, de, le, la, te, se, que
Whenever the next word starts with a vowel sound, you will change "le" or "la" to "l'".
- l'homme (not le homme) because the H is mute, to avoid the hiatus between the sounds UH and O
- l'eau (not la eau), because to avoid the hiatus between the sounds A and O
I thought "calme" was feminine as "calm" is masculine?
Because it's just easier to say l'homme that le homme, it's a slang. I guess like we use all those apostrophes in English also; it makes the spoken language to flow faster. Don't you think so? We have many words like that in Spanish also, we constantly shorten "para qué?" To "pa'que" although we would never write it like that unless we're speaking with a very familiar person. L'homme just flows better ;)
The elision of "le" and "la" to "l'" is not slang. It is a required orthography rule. It is not meant to speak faster but to avoid a vowel sound conflict between "le/la" and the next word starting with a vowel sound.
Is the same contraction rule for la/le + 'word starting in vowel' work here as well because the first sound is the vowel?
Yes, what triggers an elision is a vowel sound. "Homme" has a mute H, which means that the first sound it "o".
Since homme is pronounced omme withought the 'h' you have to put l' instead of le. For any word in which the first letter is silent then you put l'.
"La" is the feminine singular definite article. So it cannot introduce a masculine noun. In addition, "homme" starts with a vowel sound (o) because the H is mute. So the masculine article "le" must be elided (drop the vowel and replace it with an apostrophe) to ease pronunciation: l'homme.
Qui, l'homme est calme. Is my answer, which is correct. Why is my answer listed as wrong?