In Italian, l’articolo determinativo has different forms according to the gender, number, and first letter of the noun or adjective it precedes. There are some guidelines that help you to determine what article to use.
For singular nouns:
- lo-LO: is used for all masculine nouns beginning with s+consonant or z.
- il-IL: is used for all masculine nouns starting in a consonant, except the case where you use "lo".
- la-LA: is used with feminine nouns starting with any consonant
- l’-L’: This is the elision of lo or la is used before masculine or femenine nouns beginning with a vowel.
- o zucchero » the sugar
- il vecchio zio » the old uncle
- lo zio » the uncle
- l'impatto » the impact (masculine)
- il castello » the castle
- l'acqua » the water (feminine)
- la scatola » the box