Senora is the feminine version of senor, kind of a sir/ma'am thing. "Senoras y senores" is a version of "ladies and gentlemen" I think that DL here is trying to contrast the use of senora with that of mujer. I would not greet a woman en la calle and say "Hola, mujer!" I'd use senora or senorita.
I think the translation problem is that English doesn't often use titles alone. The only use of "the Mrs." that you hear is a colloqial way a man has of referring to His wife (or someone else of referringt to a specific wife) Only when the title is for a profession or aristocratic position is it ever really used as a noun that stands alone. I think as a practical matter the woman is as good a translation as any. Even lady has some special connotations (she is no lady) Ultimately many of Duo's problems come from trying to translate out of context. Just a little context would narrow the acceptable translations. Duo always accepts ellos and ellas as translations for they for example, but in a real situation only one is correct.
I believe the Spanish word "señora" is best translated to English as the word "ma'am." (Ma'am is the shortened form of "madam" used in polite English society as indicated by HarperSusan44126.) One would use it when speaking to a married woman to show respect, the same as when one is speaking to a man they use the word "señor" ("sir"). If one does not know if the woman is married or single, etiquette would dictate the use of "señora" rather than "señorita," as "señorita" is the polite word to use for a respected woman who is not married. "Mujer" simply means "woman" with no manner of respect indicated.
"Fun" fact: the Spanish señor & señora come from the Latin senior (“older”), comparative form of senex (“old”) whereas the English "lord" and "lady" come from the Old English hlavord ("keeper of bread," literally: "loaf-ward") and hlæfdige ("kneader of bread") respectively [source: wiktionary] [#SexismIsEverywhere #js]
Wow, the madam? I don't think so. The lady would be la dona (with tilde). I don't really think there's a good English translation for this. The gentlewoman sounds archaic, even though I think you can still translate el senor as the gentleman. They totally biffed on this one!
Mujer is the most generic for woman, and can sometimes be used for wife. Señora is a title. Señor and señora were once more like Lord and Lady, and sometimes it is used alone like we do lady. Donna is I believe the wife of a Don. It is either archaic or only used in Spain or regionally or a little of both because I have never heard much of it at all, although I have read it.
Señora is a title or indicator of position and respect similar to lady historically. Woman just indicates gender and age. Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe- Our Lady of Guadalupe. As a practical matter you might essentially substitute woman in many cases, but Duo is trying to indicate that it.does have an added respect inherent in it. To some extent lady doesn't really have that anymore, but that is what Duo is demonstrating.
The miss is not only dated and somewhat regional it is also would never be the translation for Señora since that is closer to Mrs. Señorita would be more likely there. But Señor and Señora historically are titles of respect, with some relationship to Lord and Lady, although they are the normal titles used today.
The Ms is just an example of the weird correct answers that Duo's shows you when you provide an unusual answer. Many younger people think that Ms is just a liberated word for Miss, but originally it was meant as a tittle that could be used that did not convey marital status similar to Mr. . I don't think a native English speaker would say the Ms however. But the Miss to me implies an unmarried woman and Señora tends to mean a married woman. There is also an additional reason for preferring lady. Señor and Señora are the Spanish equivalent to Lord and Lady. Seňor is even the word used in church for Lord. But in common conversation it is somewhat generic for woman but more respectful than mujer
The woman is the best answer to my mind. There are many people who avoid the word Lady and la señora is a common expression to indicate a adult female person, often unknown. But that woman Lady put together answer has persisted quite a while. It was just an editing error.
3Are you asking why it doesn't mean senior? There is no English word senor. Señor and Señora probably come from the same Latin root as senior, but they diverged meaning. Spanish uses mayor and another couple of words for senior
Señor/Señora used to be equivalent to the English titles Lord and Lady, but are now they are essentially the equivalent to Mr and Mrs to some extent. El Señor is still how to refer to the Lord in Christianity. And when referring to or pointing out somebody saying el señor or la señora is more polite than saying el hombre or la mujer.
"The misses" would translate as las senoritas. ("Misses" is one miss, and at least one more miss.) Mrs. is typically spelled "missus" and is very colloquial and at least to my ear mildly insulting. (I envision an Archie Bunker type saying, "As I was telling the missus..." As a translation for la senora, I think it's a bit of a stretch, especially since we don't have the context you posit (senora y senor) but you can always take it up with Duolingo. (Sorry my keyboard doesn't have the tilde. It makes me crazy too!)
This here is not Mrs. This is just a polite way to refer to someone. La señora allí en el vestito azul. But you do add the definite article when referring to someone in the third person. La Señora Álvares or el Señor Lopez. When addressing someone directly you don't. But Señora is more about age than marital status. For the most part you Adress women as Señora if they are of normal marriage age if you don't know.