Definition of lingua franca in English:

lingua franca

Line breaks: lin¦gua franca
Pronunciation: /ˌlɪŋɡwə ˈfraŋkə

noun (plural lingua francas)

1A language that is adopted as a common language between speakers whose native languages are different.
More example sentences
  • The national language of Zambia is English, which also serves as the lingua franca (common language).
  • Hausa, which is spoken by over half the population, has become the lingua franca (common language) of the country.
  • Swahili originated on the coast and became the lingua franca (common language) for much of East Africa.
1.1 [mass noun] historical A mixture of Italian with French, Greek, Arabic, and Spanish, formerly used in the eastern Mediterranean.


late 17th century: from Italian, literally 'Frankish tongue'.

Definition of lingua franca in:

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