Yana is an extinct language of northern California, considered by some linguists to be part of the
Hokan family of languages. The language had three
major dialects: Northern Yana, Central Yana, and Southern Yana (including Yahi.) Like many California Indians,
the Yana people were devastated by the aggression of gold miners in the 1800's, and the last speaker of the Yana language--
a Yahi man known to anthopologists as Ishi--died in 1916. Yana was an agglutinative, polysynthetic language with SVO word order.
The Yana language was distinctive in having different word forms used by male and female speakers, an unusual trait that does not exist
in the other languages of this region.