Volume 4, Issue 2
  • ISSN 2452-1949
  • E-ISSN: 2452-2147
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In their typological survey of pidgins, Parkvall and Bakker (2013) observe that pidgin discourse is characterized by an exceptionally low type-token ratio. Taking this observation as its starting point, the present paper examines the type-token ratio in Lingua Franca, a contact language traditionally classified as a pidgin. The study is based on a unique mini-corpus consisting of parallel translations in Lingua Franca and four comparator languages: Italian, Spanish, French and English. The paper shows that the type-token ratio of the Lingua Franca variety reflected in the mini-corpus matches, and in parts surpasses, those of its Romance lexifiers and English. The study expands our knowledge of the basilect/acrolect distinction in Lingua Franca and contributes to the discussion about the role of lexical diversity in the typological categorization of contact languages.


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