“Lingua Franca: Frankish language: a hybrid language that serves as a common mode of discourse between groups or peoples speaking different languages, especially as a commercial or trade jargon; a useful makeshift lingo (formerly a language used in Mediterranean commerce).
‘The thought came to Holliwell that he had spent much of his life depending on a few local people, speaking some lingua franca, hovering insect-like about the edge of some complex ancient society which he could never hope to really penetrate.’ Robert Stone, A Flag for Sunrise.”
Excerpted from: Grambs, David. The Random House Dictionary for Writers and Readers. New York: Random House, 1990.