Because the él in the beginning of the sentence requires the translation to be 'he'
If the sentence was just 'Comienza hoy', it could translate to '(he/she/it/you(formal) starts today'
Quote: Just to be clear 'el' (with an accent) never means 'it' but always 'he'?
As with most things in Spanish grammar, it is rarely wise to say "never" or "always" "él" WITH an accent is used as an object of a preposition pronoun meaning "it" when it substitutes for a masculine noun.
Example (from context.reverso.net
Este pequeño inflador viene gratis con él.
Look, this little pump comes free with it.
As noted in another response él with an accent can sometimes mean "him"
It shouldn't give "i" as a possibility, but assuming you meant "it"....
It gives "it begins" as a possibility because DL is giving you possible translations for comienza in a vacuum. Without any context, comienza can translate to (he/she/it/you(formal) begins. DL is not translating the entire sentence for you, it is only giving you all the possible translations for comienza. You must now use what you have learned to pick the correct translation that fits the context of this sentence.
In this sentence, we are given the subject pronoun él (he). This eliminates all choices for comienza besides "He begins".
It might have been that a year ago, but now it just has "he" or "him," both correct translations
What is the big difference between "comenzar" and "empezar"?? I have not understood it yet..
ashi97: In real life, there is no difference. I am not sure about in Duolingo.
I wrote that too :( but I don't know enough spanish to report is as a "my answer should be accepted"
Yes, 'commence' and 'start' are synonyms in English. However, in English, one would say "he starts today" rather than "he commences today"... it would be understood, but it sounds funny.
there are a lot of correct spanish translations which sound funny in english.
"he commences today" is a correct translation, in terms of that 'comienza' does indeed mean 'commence'. However if you were translating a document from Spanish to English the MOST correct translation would be "he starts today", because it makes sense in English.
Él is the third-person singular pronoun (usually subjective or prepositional object) for both male persons and masculine words that do not refer to persons. "It" should be an acceptable answer. Él does not exclusively refer to people (he or him in English).
If I wanted to say "El programa comienza hoy," but I wanted to turn "el programa" into a pronoun for brevity, I would use "Él"; there is no other pronoun that I would use. ("Ello" is very rarely used; I'm not sure when, if ever in normal conversation, it would be used.)
It's comenzar and empezar, the "i" is added before the e when conjugated into present-tense indicative. You will see this with other verbs such as tropezar (tropieza), sonar (suena) and doler (duele).
Anwyays, yes, to my knowledge they are more or less synonymous.
I think a native Spanish speaker has mentioned they are interchangeable in the forum.
I'm really digging that I speak more than one language already. Mnemonics. Mnemonics everywhere.
When launching a spaceship one must always say "Commence countdown." "Start countdown" would sound utterly ridiculous... especially when producing a movie.
How do comenzar and empezar compare? Does one make more sense in a specific situation?
Commence and Starting. They're interchangeable. One more formal just like in English.