An afternoon spent with the famous gorilla who knows sign language, and the scientist who taught her how to "talk". One of the first words that Koko used to describe herself was Queen. The gorilla was only a few years old when she first made the gesture-sweeping a paw diagonally across her chest as if tracing a royal sash. The cause of the primate's celebrity is her extraordinary aptitude for language. Over the past 43 years, since Patterson began teaching Koko at the age of 1, the gorilla has learned more than 1,000 words of modified American Sign Language-a vocabulary comparable to that of a 3-year-old human child. While there have been many attempts to teach human languages to animals, none have been more successful than Patterson's achievement with Koko.