What is the difference among de, du and des ?
Lately I started to get a little confused regarding the difference among de, du and des. I know that du equals de+le and des equals de+les, but some sentences doesn't work like that and I always lose a heart on typing them after listening ... sentences like ( un verre de vin ... which i always type un verre du vin ) ... and that always drives me crazy ..
I know it might seem a clumsy question, and I am definitely sure it has been asked zillion times before, but I am a fresh guy here :). so forgive my idiocy,
Thanks in advance.
Well, "de" is a preposition ("of"), "du" is, as you said, a mix of "de" and "le", which are a preposition and an article ("of" and "the").
So the difference between "de" and "du" is actually the same difference there is between "of" and "of the":
Un verre de vin - A glass of wine (generic)
Un verre du vin que tu as acheté - A glass of the wine you bought.
As to "des", it is wrong to say it's a mix of "de" and "les". In fact, "des" is an indefinite plural article, as opposed to "les" as a definite plural article.
Des enfants sont beau - Children are beautiful (indefinite)
Les enfants de Marie sont beau - Marie's children are beautiful (definite)
Hope this helps!
DU, DE LA, DE l', DES and DE can be:
contracted definite articles
contracted indefinite articles
contracted partitive articles
In the following link, you will find the grammar rules and exercises about this topic.