Definition of interlingua in English:



  • 1An artificial language, devised for machine translation, that makes explicit the distinctions necessary for successful translation into a target language, even where they are not present in the source language.

    • ‘Among the existing interlinguas, special attention will be given to UNL (Universal Networking Language).’
    • ‘IL2, which is in its design stage, is intended to be an interlingua, albeit a relatively simple one.’
    • ‘Two clearly different understandings of interlinguas were evident at the pre-workshop.’
    • ‘Ideas about interlinguas are intimately tied up with ideas about the representation of meaning.’
    • ‘To get a better feel for the way interlinguas work, let's look at two aspects that complicate the transfer phase: word translation and tense.’
    1. 1.1mass noun An artificial international language formed of elements common to the Romance languages, designed primarily for scientific and technical use.
      • ‘In this blog, I intend to write about languages, to translate news about languages into Interlingua, and to talk about various other things that seem interesting to me.’
      • ‘As we speak, Esperanto is being corrupted by upstart languages such as Interlingua, Klingon, Java & various cryptophasic tongues.’
      • ‘The orthography of Interlingua is based on the 26 letters of the Roman alphabet with no diacritical or accent marks.’


Early 20th century: from inter- ‘between’ + Latin lingua ‘tongue’.