In English, the placement of "only" can change the meaning. "I am only 60" means something different from "Only I am 60." How does one say "Only I am 60" in Italian? My guess would be "Io solo ho ..." or perhaps "Io solamente ho ...." Which raises another question. Would it be wrong to say "Ho solamente ..." when you mean I am only 60?
With contractions there frequently isn't a reason apart from 'this gets used a lot'. I've, isn't, won't, I'm, They're. There's no real reason why these are contracted in English either, apart from very frequent use. Though strictly speaking sessanta anni probably isn't wrong, just not common.
Yeah, I know that, but I've seen both "sessanta anni" and "sessant'anni" in Duolingo, most of the time accepting only one of the forms -I imagine they would have to accept both. Also, I know that you have to contract certain things (like articles in front of vowel, or the preposition + article), but it would be nice to know the rules for the rest of the language.
I hate this. I understand that, for the purposes of translation, Duolingo wants you to represent the equivalent sentiments between languages, but, for the purposes of learning a new language, I don't want to be limited to an understanding of the new language solely through proxy of my first language.
I don't want to hear someone say "Ho solo sessant'anni" and immediately think: "This person is sixty years old". I want hear the Italian and directly internalize: "I have only sixty years".
Part of learning a language is the reconfiguration of your consciousness to reflect a perspective on the world rooted in the new language. Imposing an anglo-centric world-view on the Italian language totally undermines my capacity to fully comprehend and internalize what Italian is.