Please do not modify this conversation, though feel free to discuss its conclusions.
a common language spoken in Mediterranean ports in centuries past (consisting of Italian mixed with French, Spanish, Arabic and some Greek words and used by sailors of different countries to communicate with one another).
a language used by people of diverse speech to communicate with one another, often a basic form of speech with simplified grammar.
Some senses (those given also in English) are given as Latin. While that may be the obvious choice to anyone who would write about the particular language in Latin, I would like to see evidence that it was the term (it may well have been something different); and I would like to see any evidence for the generic, pluralizable use in Latin. [This is leaving aside for the moment that the entire Latin entry belongs at lingua Franca—lingua franca is capitalized that way because it is in origin an Italian term, and that's how Italians capitalize such things...] —Muke Tever 05:01, 17 October 2005 (UTC)