The International Auxiliary Language Association, known by its initials as IALA, was founded in 1924, and obtained its principal financial support from an American lady, Mrs. Alice V. Morris. In 1951, IALA published the most important Interlingua work, the "Interlingua English Dictionary", containing 27000 entries and edited by Alexander Gode, its director of research from 1948. Dr. Gode was born in Bremen, Germany, but emigrated to Americal before the war.

If a word exists in at least three of the "control" languages, English, French, Spanish, Italian, German and Russian, it is automatically accepted as an Interlingua word after it has been standardised on the basis of its etymology. For example, the word which appears as "natio" in Latin, "nation" in English and French, "Nation" in German, "nacio'n" in Spanish, "nac,a~o" in Portuguese and "natsiya" in Russian become "nation" in Interlingua.

Because it consists of international words, which are mostly Latin in origin, Interlingua can be understood by millions of people who have not studied it and who may never even have heard of it by name. That is why it is so useful for communication with the local population in countries of Southern Europe and in Latin America.

Because Interlingua is nobody's mother tongue (yet), it does not give an unfair advantage to the speakers of any particular language and can be introduced as an official language in international organizations. Not only is it neutral, but also very easy to learn because of its simple and regular grammar and its vocabulary of words which are already familiar.

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