Please confirm. The masculine forms bel, nouvel and vieil are used before a noun that begins with a VOWEL. This rule does not apply to a noun that begins with an H? Par exemple: Regarde ces vieux hommes. Merci.
Unfortunately, this question has no black and white answer, because there are to versions of "h": h aspiré and h muet.
The h aspiré counts as a consonant, which means that there are no contractions with it. Words that fall into that category are, for example: le héros, le hamster, le hasard, ....
H muet, on the other hand is moot (=muet) and therefore contracts: l'hôtel, l'herbe, l'histoire, ...
Here is a list of words for a start: http://www.aidenet.eu/grammaire01ac.htm
Also, as explained in the lesson, that rule doesn't apply to plural nouns:
The masculine forms bel, nouvel and vieil (when in front of a vowel) become the regular masculine plural beaux, nouveaux and vieux.
The point is that the "x" can be pronounced if necessary, as in the case of "vieux hommes".
Merci Alan. So singular: le vieil homme. Pluaral: les vieux hommes.
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