The words are similar, but there is an important difference. Freedom is the ability to do what you wish. Liberty is like the rule of law letting you be free.
Freedom: "the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint."
Liberty: "the state of being free within society from oppressive restrictions imposed by authority on one's way of life, behavior, or political views."
Why is "They are thinking about liberty" wrong? Note that although this is a gerund conjugation in English, very often the present indicative in Spanish has the same meaning. For example, "leo un libro" is correctly translated as either "I read a book" or "I am reading a book" where the latter (gerund) form is almost certainly the intended meaning when translating to English.
T L, one problem I have, and likely others as well, is that it was - - let me see -- about 60 years ago since I was at school, and even then, I could'nt have told you what a "gerund" or a "present indicative" was or is! :-)
I'm trying to learn 2 languages at once here really, Spanish, and "grammar" is the other one!
Thanks Thomas, maybe my (singular) brain cell is gettin too old at 75 plus ♡
I hope I'll still be learning at 75! Having tried both ways I decided I could learn, and better and with more fun without explicitly learning grammar. I am testing this theory again now with German having failed because of grammar and a change of school. So far so good! I think the "formally learning grammar isn't necessary" view applies to other things in life too.
You have a point. However, I think the English definitions are disparate enough to warrant different translations based on context. For example, an article on the difference between liberty and freedom states:
"...liberty implies a system of rules, a ''network of restraint and order,'' hence the word's close association with political life. Freedom has a more general meaning, which ranges from an opposition to slavery to the absence of psychological or personal encumbrances (no one would describe liberty as another name for nothing left to lose)."
This difference is probably too strict for casual use, but Duo tends to teach us the strict translations so we have a framework, and we can break the rules later if we so desire.
Opanner, I found using the best headphones I could find was best - - especially using a laptop or tablet computer. The speakers are so small in even the best of these, and do NOT help at all. As has been said before, Duo is largely a free resource, and all I did was find a phrase that was "bad", then changed around all the headphones I had till I found the best with my 10 inch Samsung tablet, and I stick with those ♡ , and they are also good with the smaller 7 inch Samsung
¡Oh, yes, and by the way, these were a mid price no name set from the local general gadget store, not my noise cancelling super music set!
Thanks for the advice, Mel. I use a desktop w/ reasonably good speakers but have some hearing loss. And DL's audio of "ellos" & "ellas" sound absolutely identical, while listening to those two words on spanishdict.com's site they are clearly distinct. I'll see if I can get some headphones. Appreciate your comment.
This is another big Duolingo mistake.... "Ellos piensan en libertad" means that they are free and they are thinking.... But Duolingo says "They think about freedom." And a correct translation for that sentence can be "Ellos piensan en la libertad." or "Ellos piensan sobre la libertad." Without "la" the meaning changes.....