Language used for communication between two or more groups that have different native languages. It may be a standard languagefor example, English and French are often used for international diplomacy, and Swahili is used by speakers of the many different local languages of eastern Africa. A lingua franca may also be a pidgin, like Melanesian Pidgin, widely used in the southern Pacific. The term lingua franca (Latin: Frankish language) was first applied to a pidgin based on French and Italian developed in the Mediterranean. See alsocreole.