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A lingua franca (; ; for plurals see ), also known as a bridge language, common language, trade language, auxiliary language, vehicular language, or link language, is a language or
dialect The term dialect (from , , from the word , 'discourse', from , 'through' and , 'I speak') can refer to either of two distinctly different types of phenomena: * One usage refers to a of a that is a characteristic of a particular group of ...
systematically used to make communication possible between groups of people who do not share a
native language A first language, native tongue, native language, or mother/father/parent tongue (also known as arterial language or L1) is a language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), g ...
or dialect, particularly when it is a third language that is distinct from both of the speakers' native languages. Lingua francas have developed around the world throughout human history, sometimes for commercial reasons (so-called "trade languages" facilitated trade), but also for cultural, religious, diplomatic and administrative convenience, and as a means of exchanging information between scientists and other scholars of different nationalities. The term is taken from the medieval Mediterranean Lingua Franca, an
Italian Italian may refer to: * Anything of, from, or related to the country and nation of Italy ** Italians, an ethnic group or simply a citizen of the Italian Republic ** Italian language, a Romance language *** Regional Italian, regional variants of the ...

Italian
-based
pidgin language A pidgin , or pidgin language, is a grammatically simplified means of communication that develops between two or more groups that do not have a language in common: typically, its vocabulary and grammar are limited and often drawn from several lang ...
used especially by traders in the
Mediterranean Basin In biogeography, the Mediterranean Basin (also known as the Mediterranean region or sometimes Mediterranea) is the region of lands around the Mediterranean Sea The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by ...
from the 11th to the 19th centuries. A
world language In sociolinguistics Sociolinguistics is the descriptive study of the effect of any and all aspects of society, including cultural Norm (sociology), norms, expectations, and context, on the way language is used, and society's effect on language. I ...
– a language spoken internationally and by many people – is a language that may function as a global lingua franca.


Characteristics

Any language regularly used for communication between people who do not share a native language is a lingua franca. Lingua franca is a functional term, independent of any linguistic history or language structure.
Pidgin A pidgin , or pidgin language, is a grammatically simplified means of communication that develops between two or more groups that do not have a language in common: typically, its vocabulary and grammar are limited and often drawn from several lan ...

Pidgin
s are therefore lingua francas; creoles and arguably
mixed languages A mixed language is a language that arises among a bilingual group combining aspects of two or more languages but not clearly deriving primarily from any single language. It differs from a creole or pidgin language in that, whereas creoles/pidgin ...
may similarly be used for communication between language groups. But lingua franca is equally applicable to a non-creole language native to one nation (often a colonial power) learned as a
second language A person's second language, or L2, is a language that is not the native language A first language, native tongue, native language, or mother/father/parent tongue (also known as arterial language or L1), is a language A language is a struc ...
and used for communication between diverse language communities in a colony or former colony. Lingua francas are often pre-existing languages with native speakers, but they can also be pidgin or creole languages developed for that specific region or context. Pidgin languages are rapidly developed and simplified combinations of two or more established languages, while creoles are generally viewed as pidgins that have evolved into fully complex languages in the course of adaptation by subsequent generations. Pre-existing lingua francas such as French are used to facilitate intercommunication in large-scale trade or political matters, while pidgins and creoles often arise out of colonial situations and a specific need for communication between colonists and indigenous peoples. Pre-existing lingua francas are generally widespread, highly developed languages with many native speakers. Conversely, pidgin languages are very simplified means of communication, containing loose structuring, few grammatical rules, and possessing few or no native speakers. Creole languages are more developed than their ancestral pidgins, utilizing more complex structure, grammar, and vocabulary, as well as having substantial communities of native speakers. Whereas a
vernacular A vernacular or vernacular language refers to the language or dialect that is spoken by people that are inhabiting a particular country or region. The vernacular is typically the native language, normally Spoken language, spoken informally rath ...
language is the native language of a specific geographical community, a lingua franca is used beyond the boundaries of its original community, for trade, religious, political, or academic reasons. For example, English is a in the United Kingdom but it is used as a in the
Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Filipinas * hil, Republ ...

Philippines
, alongside
Filipino Filipino may refer to: * Something from or related to the Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas or ''Filipinas'' ), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, ...
.
Arabic Arabic (, ' or , ' or ) is a Semitic language The Semitic languages are a branch of the Afroasiatic language family originating in the Middle East The Middle East is a list of transcontinental countries, transcontinental region ...

Arabic
,
French
French
,
Mandarin Chinese Mandarin (; ) is a group of Sinitic languages, Sinitic (Chinese) languages natively spoken across most of northern and southwestern China. The group includes the Beijing dialect, the basis of the phonology of Standard Chinese. Because Mandarin ...
, and
Russian Russian refers to anything related to Russia, including: *Russians (русские, ''russkiye''), an ethnic group of the East Slavic peoples, primarily living in Russia and neighboring countries *Rossiyane (россияне), Russian language term ...
serve similar purposes as industrial and educational lingua francas across regional and national boundaries. Even though they are used as bridge languages,
international auxiliary language An international auxiliary language (sometimes abbreviated as IAL or auxlang) is a meant for communication between people from different nations who do not share a common . An auxiliary language is primarily a . It usually takes words from widely ...
s such as
Esperanto Esperanto ( or ) is the world's most widely spoken Constructed language, constructed international auxiliary language. Created by Polish ophthalmologist L. L. Zamenhof in 1887, it was intended to be a universal second language for internationa ...
have not had a great degree of adoption, so they are not described as lingua francas.


Etymology

The term "lingua franca" derives from Mediterranean Lingua Franca (also known as ''Sabir''), the pidgin language that people around the
Levant The Levant () is an term referring to a large area in the region of . In its narrowest sense, it is equivalent to the , which included present-day , , , , and most of southwest of the middle . In its widest historical sense, the Levant ...

Levant
and the eastern Mediterranean Sea used as the main language of commerce and diplomacy from late
medieval times Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament is a family dinner theater featuring staged medieval In the history of Europe The history of Europe concerns itself with the discovery and collection, the study, organization and presentation an ...
to the 18th century, most notably during the
Renaissance era The Renaissance ( , ) , from , with the same meanings. was a period in European history marking the transition from the Middle Ages In the history of Europe, the Middle Ages or medieval period lasted from the 5th to the late 15th ...
. During that period, a simplified version of mainly Italian in the eastern and Spanish in the western Mediterranean that incorporated many
loan words A loanword (also loan word or loan-word) is a word In linguistics, a word of a spoken language can be defined as the smallest sequence of phonemes that can be uttered in isolation with semantic, objective or pragmatics, practical meaning ( ...
from
Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 million as of ...
, the
Slavic languages The Slavic languages, also known as the Slavonic languages, are Indo-European languages spoken primarily by the Slavs, Slavic peoples or their descendants. They are thought to descend from a proto-language called Proto-Slavic language, Proto- ...

Slavic languages
,
Arabic Arabic (, ' or , ' or ) is a Semitic language The Semitic languages are a branch of the Afroasiatic language family originating in the Middle East The Middle East is a list of transcontinental countries, transcontinental region ...

Arabic
, and
Turkish Turkish may refer to: * of or about Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southeastern Europe and Western Asia. It shares borders with Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), offi ...

Turkish
came to be widely used as the "lingua franca" of the region, although some scholars claim that the Mediterranean Lingua Franca was just poorly used
Italian Italian may refer to: * Anything of, from, or related to the country and nation of Italy ** Italians, an ethnic group or simply a citizen of the Italian Republic ** Italian language, a Romance language *** Regional Italian, regional variants of the ...

Italian
. In Lingua Franca (the specific language), is from the Italian for "a language." is related to Greek () and Arabic () as well as the equivalent Italian—in all three cases, the literal sense is "
Frankish Frankish may refer to: * Franks The Franks ( la, Franci or ) were a group of Germanic peoples The historical Germanic peoples (from lat, Germani) are a category of ancient northern European tribes, first mentioned by Graeco-Roman author ...
", leading to the direct translation: "language of the Franks". During the late
Byzantine Empire The Byzantine Empire, also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire, or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn ...

Byzantine Empire
, "Franks" was a term that applied to all . The overall phrase of ''lingua franca'' is also speculated to originate from "lisan al-Farang" (Arabic: لسان الفرنجة), which also means the "language of the Franks". Through changes of the term in literature, "lingua franca" has come to be interpreted as a general term for pidgins, creoles, and some or all forms of vehicular languages. This transition in meaning has been attributed to the idea that pidgin languages only became widely known from the 16th century on due to European colonization of continents such as The Americas, Africa, and Asia. During this time, the need for a term to address these pidgin languages arose, hence the shift in the meaning of Lingua Franca from a single proper noun to a common noun encompassing a large class of pidgin languages. As recently as the late 20th century, some restricted the use of the generic term to mean only
mixed language A mixed language is a language that arises among a bilingual group combining aspects of two or more languages but not clearly deriving primarily from any single language. It differs from a creole or pidgin language in that, whereas creoles/pidgin ...
s that are used as vehicular languages, its original meaning. Douglas Harper's ''Online Etymology Dictionary'' states that the term "Lingua Franca" (as the name of the particular language) was first recorded in English during the 1670s, although an even earlier example of the use of it in English is attested from 1632, where it is also referred to as "Bastard Spanish".


Usage notes

The term is well established in its naturalization to English, which is why major dictionaries do not italicize it as a "foreign" term. Its plurals in English are lingua francas and linguae francae, with the former being first-listed or only-listed in major dictionaries.


Examples

The use of lingua francas has existed since antiquity.
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be in relation with") is "an appa ...

Latin
and
Koine Greek Koine Greek (, , Greek approximately ;. , , , lit. "Common Greek"), also known as Alexandrian dialect, common Attic, Hellenistic or Biblical Greek, was the koiné language, common supra-regional form of Greek language, Greek spoken and written d ...
were the lingua francas of the
Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn Rhōmaíōn) was the post-Republican Republican can refer to: Political ideology * An advocate of a republic, a type of governme ...

Roman Empire
and the
Hellenistic The Hellenistic period spans the period of Mediterranean history The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by the Mediterranean Basin and almost completely enclosed by land: on the north by Western Europe, We ...

Hellenistic
culture.
AkkadianAkkadian or Accadian may refer to: * The Akkadian language Akkadian ( ''akkadû'', ''ak-ka-du-u2''; logogram: ''URIKI'')John Huehnergard & Christopher Woods, "Akkadian and Eblaite", ''The Cambridge Encyclopedia of the World's Ancient Languages' ...

Akkadian
(died out during
Classical antiquity Classical antiquity (also the classical era, classical period or classical age) is the period of cultural history History (from Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ...
) and then
Aramaic Aramaic (: ''Arāmāyā''; : ; : ; ) is a language that originated among the in the ancient , at the end of the , and later became one of the most prominent languages of the . During its three thousand years long history, Aramaic went thr ...
remained the common languages of a large part of Western Asia from several earlier empires. The majority of pre-colonial North American nations communicated internationally using Hand Talk. Also called Prairie Sign Language, Plains Indian Sign Language, or First Nations Sign Language, this
language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the ...

language
functioned predominately—and still continues to function—as a second language within most of the (now historical)
countries A country is a distinct territorial body or political entity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organized by some form of Institutionalisation, institutionalized social ...

countries
of the Great Plains, from Newe Segobia in the West to Anishinaabewaki in the East, down into what are now the northern states of Mexico and up into
Cree The Cree ( cr, Néhinaw, script=Latn, , etc.; french: link=no, Cri) are a North American Indigenous people. They live primarily in Canada Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its Provinces and territories of Canad ...

Cree
Country stopping before Denendeh. The relationship remains unknown between Hand Talk and other manual Indigenous languages like
Keresan Sign Language Keresan Sign Language, also known as Keresan Pueblo Indian Sign Language (KPISL) or Keresign, is a village sign language spoken by many of the inhabitants of a Keres people, Keresan pueblo with a relatively high incidence of congenital deafness (th ...
and
Plateau Sign Language Plateau Sign Language, or Old Plateau Sign Language, is a poorly attested, extinct sign language Sign languages (also known as signed languages) are language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including spee ...
, the latter of which is now extinct (though Ktunaxa Sign Language is still spoken). Although unrelated, perhaps
Inuit Sign Language Inuit Sign Language (IUR, Inuktitut Inuktitut (; , syllabics ; from , "person" + , "like", "in the manner of"), also Eastern Canadian Inuktitut, is one of the principal Inuit languages The Inuit languages are a closely related group of ...
played and continues to play a similar role across
Inuit Nunangat Inuit Nunangat (; Inuktitut syllabics: ; lit. "lands, waters and ices of the
nuit Nuit (alternatively Nu, Nut, or Nuith) is a goddess in Thelema, the speaker in the first Chapter of '' The Book of the Law'', the sacred text written or received in 1904 by Aleister Crowley Aleister Crowley (; born Edward Alexander Crowley; ...
people") is the homeland of the Inuit in Canada. This Arctic homeland consists of four Northern Canada, northern Canadian regions called the Inuvialuit Settleme ...
and the various
Inuit Inuit (; iu, ᐃᓄᐃᑦ 'the people', singular: Inuk, , dual: Inuuk, ) are a group of culturally similar indigenous peoples Indigenous peoples, also referred to as First people, Aboriginal people, Native people, or autochthonous people, ...
dialects The term dialect (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of th ...
. The original Hand Talk is found across
Indian Country Indian country is any of the many self-governing Native American/American Indian communities throughout the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a country Conti ...
in pockets, but it has also been employed to create new or revive old languages, such as with Oneida Sign Language. Sogdian was used to facilitate trade between those who spoke different languages along the
Silk Road The Silk Road () was and is a network of trade route A trade route is a logistical network identified as a series of pathways and stoppages used for the commercial transport of cargo. The term can also be used to refer to trade over bodies of ...

Silk Road
, which is why native speakers of Sogdian were employed as translators in
Tang China The Tang dynasty (, ; ), or Tang Empire, was an Dynasties in Chinese history, imperial dynasty of China that ruled from 618 to 907, with an Zhou dynasty (690–705), interregnum between 690 and 705. It was preceded by the Sui dynasty and fol ...
. The Sogdians also ended up circulating spiritual beliefs and texts, including those of
Buddhism Buddhism (, ) is the world's fourth-largest religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, and ...

Buddhism
and
Christianity Christianity is an Abrahamic religions, Abrahamic, Monotheism, monotheistic religion based on the Life of Jesus in the New Testament, life and Teachings of Jesus, teachings of Jesus, Jesus of Nazareth. It is the Major religious groups, world's ...

Christianity
, thanks to their ability to communicate to many people in the region through their native language. The
Hindustani language Hindustani (; Devanagari Devanagari ( ; , , Sanskrit pronunciation: ), also called Nagari (),Kathleen Kuiper (2010), The Culture of India, New York: The Rosen Publishing Group, , page 83 is a left-to-right abugida An abugida ...
(
Hindi Hindi (Devanagari: , हिंदी, ISO 15919, ISO: ), or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi (Devanagari: , ISO 15919, ISO: ), is an Indo-Aryan language spoken chiefly in Hindi Belt, North India. Hindi has been described as a Standard la ...

Hindi
-
Urdu Urdu (; ur, , ALA-LC ALA-LC (American Library Association The American Library Association (ALA) is a nonprofit organization A nonprofit organization (NPO), also known as a non-business entity, not-for-profit organization, or nonpr ...

Urdu
) is the lingua franca of
Pakistan Pakistan, . Pronounced variably in English as , , , and . officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country in South Asia. It is the world's List of countries and dependencies by population, fifth-most populous country, with a popul ...

Pakistan
and
Northern India North India is a loosely defined region consisting of the northern part of India India, officially the Republic of India (: ), is a country in . It is the by area, the country, and the most populous in the world. Bounded by the on ...
. Many Indian states have adopted the Three-language formula in which students in Hindi-speaking states are taught: "(a) Hindi (with Sanskrit as part of the composite course); (b) Urdu or any other modern Indian language and (c) English or any other modern European language." The order in non-Hindi speaking states is: "(a) the regional language; (b) Hindi; (c) Urdu or any other modern Indian language excluding (a) and (b); and (d) English or any other modern European language."
Hindi Hindi (Devanagari: , हिंदी, ISO 15919, ISO: ), or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi (Devanagari: , ISO 15919, ISO: ), is an Indo-Aryan language spoken chiefly in Hindi Belt, North India. Hindi has been described as a Standard la ...

Hindi
has also emerged as a lingua franca for the locals of
Arunachal Pradesh Arunachal Pradesh (, literally "land of dawn-lit mountains") is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ...

Arunachal Pradesh
, a linguistically diverse state in Northeast India. It is estimated that 90 percent of the state's population knows Hindi.
Indonesian Indonesian is anything of, from, or related to Indonesia, an archipelagic country in Southeast Asia. It may refer to: * Indonesians, citizens of Indonesia ** Native Indonesians, diverse groups of local inhabitants of the archipelago ** Indonesian w ...
– a standardized form of the
Malay language Malay (; ms, bahasa Melayu, links=no, : , : ) is an in , , and and unofficially spoken in and parts of . It is spoken by 290 million people (around 260 million in alone in its own literary standard named "") across the . As the or ...
understood across the Malay world including
Malaysia Malaysia ( ; ) is a country in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the geographical southeastern subregion of Asia, consisting of the regions ...

Malaysia
,
Singapore Singapore (), officially the Republic of Singapore, is a sovereign state, sovereign island city-state in maritime Southeast Asia. It lies about one degree of latitude () north of the equator, off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, bor ...

Singapore
and
Brunei Brunei ( ; ), officially the Nation of Brunei, the Abode of Peace ( ms, Negara Brunei Darussalam, Jawi alphabet, Jawi: ), is a sovereign state, country located on the north coast of the island of Borneo in Southeast Asia. Apart from its coa ...

Brunei
, originating from a variant spoken in
Riau Riau is a province of Indonesia Provinces of Indonesia are the 34 administrative division, administrative division of Indonesia and the highest tier of the local government (formerly called first-level region provinces or ). Provinces are ...
– is the official language and a lingua franca in
Indonesia Indonesia ( ), officially the Republic of Indonesia ( id, Republik Indonesia, links=yes ), is a country in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is t ...

Indonesia
, although Javanese has more native speakers. Still, Indonesian is the sole official language and is spoken throughout the country even though it is the first language of a very small minority of Indonesians.
Swahili Swahili may refer to: * Swahili language, a Bantu language official in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda and widely spoken in the African Great Lakes * Swahili people, an ethnic group in East Africa * Swahili culture, the culture of the Swahili people * Sw ...
developed as a lingua franca between several
Bantu Bantu may refer to: *Bantu languages, constitute the largest sub-branch of the Niger–Congo languages *Bantu peoples, over 400 peoples of Africa speaking a Bantu language *Afro-textured hair#Styling, Bantu knots, a type of African hairstyle *Blac ...
-speaking tribal groups on the east coast of Africa with heavy influence from Arabic. The earliest examples of writing in Swahili are from 1711. In the early 19th century the use of Swahili as a lingua franca moved inland with the Arabic ivory and slave traders. It was eventually adopted by Europeans as well during periods of colonization in the area. German colonizers used it as the language of administration in
German East Africa German East Africa (german: Deutsch-Ostafrika) (GEA) was a German colonial empire, German colony in the African Great Lakes region, which included present-day Burundi, Rwanda, the Tanzania mainland, and the Kionga Triangle, a small region later ...

German East Africa
, later becoming
Tanganyika Tanganyika may refer to: * Tanganyika (territory) Tanganyika was a territory located on the continent of Africa, and administered by the United Kingdom from 1916 until 1961. The UK initially administered the territory as an occupying power with ...
, which influenced the choice to use it as a national language in what is now independent
Tanzania Tanzania (; ), officially the United Republic of Tanzania ( sw, Jamhuri ya Muungano wa Tanzania), is a country in East Africa East Africa or Eastern Africa is the eastern subregion of the Africa Africa is the world's second-larges ...

Tanzania
.
Swahili Swahili may refer to: * Swahili language, a Bantu language official in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda and widely spoken in the African Great Lakes * Swahili people, an ethnic group in East Africa * Swahili culture, the culture of the Swahili people * Sw ...
(known to natives as Kiswahili) is currently one of the national languages and it is taught in schools and universities in several East African countries, thus prompting it to be regarded as a modern-day lingua franca by many people in the region. Several
Pan-African Pan-Africanism is a worldwide movement that aims to encourage and strengthen bonds of solidarity between all indigenous and diaspora ethnic groups of African descent. Based on a common goal dating back to the Atlantic slave trade The Atlant ...
writers and politicians have unsuccessfully called for Swahili to become the lingua franca of Africa as a means of unifying the African continent and overcoming the legacy of colonialism.
English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval England, which has eventually become the World language, leading lan ...

English
is often used by non-native English speakers who have different mother tongues to communicate with one another. In the
European Union The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe Europe is a which is also recognised as part of , located entirely in the and mostly in the . It comprises the wester ...

European Union
, the use of
English as a lingua franca English as a lingua franca (ELF) is the use of the English language "as a global means of inter-community communication" (Seidlhofer 2016: 20) and can be understood as "''any use of English among speakers of different first languages for whom Engl ...
has led researchers to investigate whether a new dialect of English ( Euro English) has emerged. When the
United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use Britain as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Some prefer to use Britain as shorth ...

United Kingdom
became a colonial power, English served as the lingua franca of the colonies of the
British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other Dependent territory, territories ruled or administered by the United Kingdom and its predecessor states. ...

British Empire
. In the post-colonial period, some of the newly created nations which had multiple
indigenous language An indigenous language or autochthonous language, is a language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Signed language, sign language) and writing. Most languages have ...
s opted to continue using English as one of their official languages. A couple of examples of these nations are
Ghana Ghana (), officially the Republic of Ghana, is a country in West Africa West Africa or Western Africa is the westernmost region of . The defines Western Africa as the 17 countries of , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , and as well as .Paul R. ...

Ghana
and
South Africa South Africa, officially the Republic of South Africa (RSA), is the Southern Africa, southernmost country in Africa. With over Demographics of South Africa, 60 million people, it is the world's List of countries by population, 23rd-most ...

South Africa
.
English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval England, which has eventually become the World language, leading lan ...

English
is also taught in schools and used as a lingua franca in
Singapore Singapore (), officially the Republic of Singapore, is a sovereign state, sovereign island city-state in maritime Southeast Asia. It lies about one degree of latitude () north of the equator, off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, bor ...

Singapore
, a country that has four official languages. Although not spoken as a first language by most African French speakers, is a lingua franca in most Western and Central African countries and an official language of many, a remnant of French and
Belgian Belgian may refer to: * Something of, or related to, Belgium Belgium, ; french: Belgique ; german: Belgien officially the Kingdom of Belgium, is a country in Western Europe Western Europe is the region of Europe Europe is a contine ...

Belgian
colonialism Colonialism is a practice or policy of control by one people or power over other people or areas, often by establishing colony, colonies and generally with the aim of economic dominance. In the process of colonisation, colonisers may impose the ...

colonialism
. These African countries and others are members of the
Francophonie The Organisation internationale de la Francophonie (OIF; sometimes shortened to the Francophonie, french: La Francophonie , but also called International Organisation of La Francophonie in English-language context) is an international organiza ...

Francophonie
. The
Spanish language Spanish ( or , ) is a Romance language The Romance languages, less commonly Latin or Neo-Latin languages, are the modern languages that evolved from Vulgar Latin Vulgar Latin, also known as Popular or Colloquial Latin is a range of inform ...

Spanish language
spread mainly throughout the
New World The "New World" is a term for the majority of Earth Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the only astronomical object known to harbour and support life. 29.2% of Earth's surface is land consisting of continents and islands. The re ...
, becoming a lingua franca in the territories and colonies of the
Spanish Empire The Spanish Empire ( es, link=no, Imperio Español), also known as the Hispanic Monarchy ( es, link=no, Monarquía Hispánica) or the Catholic Monarchy ( es, link=no, Monarquía Católica) during the Early Modern period, was a colonial empire ...

Spanish Empire
. It is also one of the most taught foreign languages throughout the world and is also one of the six official languages of the United Nations.
International Sign International Sign (IS) is a pidgin A pidgin , or pidgin language, is a grammatically simplified means of communication that develops between two or more groups that do not have a language in common: typically, its vocabulary and grammar are li ...
, though a
pidgin A pidgin , or pidgin language, is a grammatically simplified means of communication that develops between two or more groups that do not have a language in common: typically, its vocabulary and grammar are limited and often drawn from several lan ...

pidgin
language, is present at most significant international gatherings, from which interpretations of national
sign language Sign languages (also known as signed languages) are languages that use the visual-manual modality to convey meaning. Sign languages are expressed through manual articulations in combination with non-manual elements. Sign languages are full-fled ...

sign language
s are given, such as in LSF, , BSL, Libras, or Auslan. International Sign, or IS and formerly Gestuno, interpreters can be found at many
European Union The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe Europe is a which is also recognised as part of , located entirely in the and mostly in the . It comprises the wester ...

European Union
parliamentary or committee sittings, during certain United Nations affaires, conducting international sporting events like the Deaflympics, in all World Federation of the Deaf functions, and across similar settings. The language has few set internal grammatical rules, instead co-opting national vocabularies of the speaker and audience, and modifying the words to bridge linguistic gaps, with heavy use of gesture and Classifier constructions in sign languages, classifiers.
Russian Russian refers to anything related to Russia, including: *Russians (русские, ''russkiye''), an ethnic group of the East Slavic peoples, primarily living in Russia and neighboring countries *Rossiyane (россияне), Russian language term ...
is in use and widely understood in Central Asia and the Caucasus, areas formerly part of the Russian Empire and Soviet Union, and in much of Central and Eastern Europe. It remains the official language of the Commonwealth of Independent States. Russian is also one of the six official languages of the United Nations. Persian language, Persian, an Iranian language, is the official language of Iran, Afghanistan (Dari language, Dari) and Tajikistan (Tajik language, Tajik). It acts as a lingua franca in both Iran and Afghanistan between the various ethnic groups in those countries. The Persian language in South Asia, before the British Raj, British colonized the Indian subcontinent, was the region's lingua franca and a widely used official language in north India and
Pakistan Pakistan, . Pronounced variably in English as , , , and . officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is a country in South Asia. It is the world's List of countries and dependencies by population, fifth-most populous country, with a popul ...

Pakistan
. Old Church Slavonic, an Eastern South Slavic language, is the first Slavic languages, Slavic literary language. Between 9th and 11th century it was lingua franca of a great part of the predominantly Slavs, Slavic states and populations in Southeast Europe, Southeast and Eastern Europe, in liturgy and church organization, culture, literature, education and diplomacy. Hausa language, Hausa can also be seen as a lingua franca because it is the language of communication between speakers of different languages in Northern Nigeria and other West African countries, including the northern region of Ghana. Arabic was used as a lingua franca across the Islamic empires, whose sizes necessitated the need for a common language. In Djibouti and parts of Eritrea, both of which are countries where multiple official languages are spoken, Arabic has emerged as a lingua franca in part thanks to the population of the region being predominantly Muslims, Muslim and Arabic playing a crucial role in the religion of Islam. In addition, after having fled from Eritrea due to Eritrean War of Independence, ongoing warfare and gone to some of the nearby Arab countries, Eritrean emigrants are contributing to Arabic becoming a lingua franca in the region by coming back to their homelands having picked up the Arabic language. In Qatar, the medical community is primarily made up of workers from countries without English as a native language. In medical practices and hospitals, nurses typically communicate with other professionals in English as a lingua franca. This occurrence has led to interest in researching the consequences and affordances of the medical community communicating in a lingua franca.


See also

* Rosetta Stone * Global language system * International auxiliary language * Koiné language * Language contact * List of languages by number of native speakers * List of languages by total number of speakers * Mediterranean Lingua Franca * Mixed language * Mutual intelligibility *
Pidgin A pidgin , or pidgin language, is a grammatically simplified means of communication that develops between two or more groups that do not have a language in common: typically, its vocabulary and grammar are limited and often drawn from several lan ...

Pidgin
* Interlinguistics * Universal language * Working language * World language


References


Further reading

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External links

* * * from Juan del Encina, ''Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme'', Carlo Goldoni's ''L'Impresario da Smyrna'', Diego de Haedo and other sources * {{DEFAULTSORT:Lingua Franca Languages by place in society Interlinguistics Italian words and phrases