In countries where English is not a native language, you hear people speak with no conjunctions, no verb conjugations, no adjectives nor adverbs. Examples: You come my house. I cook chicken. We eat chicken. After eat we sleep my bed.

  • 6
    I don't know an exact term for "non-linguist's imaginary idea of how a man raised by apes would speak"
    – Colin Fine
    Commented May 10, 2020 at 18:33
  • 4
    But I think you are talking about a pidgin (of which, confusingly, Tok Pisin is not an example).
    – Colin Fine
    Commented May 10, 2020 at 18:35
  • This is a rendering of the language of the Great Apes. who raised Tarzan, according to Edgar Rice Burroughs (the definitive reference).
    – Greg Lee
    Commented May 10, 2020 at 21:48

1 Answer 1


As @ColinFine notes in the comments, this looks like a Pidgin.

The world's most famous pidgin language speaker is Tarzan. When he says 'Me Tarzan, you Jane,' he uses a simplified version of English.

(source: Language Myths, by Laurie Bauer)

Wikipedia defines it as

a grammatically simplified means of communication that develops between two or more groups that do not have a language in common: typically, its vocabulary and grammar are limited and often drawn from several languages.

That isn't particularly true in the (fictive) case of Tarzan, but, as noted in The English Language: A Guided Tour of the Language by David Crystal notes, "Tarzan's style is not very far from reality".

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