What does the contractions del and de la mean?
Del is just de and el shmooshed together. In English it means, of the (masculine) And then de la means the same thing but it would be hard to shmoosh those together because it would sound like dela and that sounds weird.
Long story short, they both mean of the and one is masculine and the other is feminine!!!
"De la" has the same meaning as "de el". "Del" is just "de el" put together. "Del" is easier to say, similar to using an apostrophe in English (for example: they're is easier than saying they are). The meaning of del or de la is different depending on the situation. It can mean "from the" or "of the". Soy de los estados Unidos means I am from the U.S.