The word Yona in Pali and the Prakrits, and the analogue "Yavana" in Sanskrit are words used in the Ancient India to designate Greek speakers. "Yona" and "Yavana" are transliterations of the Greek word for " Ionians" , who were probably the first Greeks to be known in the East.
The Yavanas are mentioned in the Majjhima Nikaya, in which Gautama Buddha mentions to the Brahman Assalayana the existence of the Kamboja and Yona people who have only two castes, master or slave.
Examples of direct association of these with the Greeks include:
- The mention of the "Yona king Aṃtiyoka" in the Edicts of Ashoka (280 BCE)
- The mention of the "Yona king Aṃtalikitasa" in the Heliodorus pillar in Vidisha (110 BCE)
- King Milinda and his bodyguard of "500 Yonas" in the Milinda Panha.
- The description of Greek astrology and Greek terminology in the Yavanajātaka "Nativity of the Yavanas" (150 CE).
- The mention of Alexandria on the Caucasus, "the city of the Yonas" in the Mahavamsa, Chapter 29 (4th century CE).
Yona is a Pali word used to refer to speakers of Greek.
Yona may also refer to:Places
- Yona, Burkina Faso, a village in Bana Department, Balé Province, Burkina Faso
- Yona, Guam, a village on Guam
- Yona, Russia, a rural locality (a selo) in Murmansk Oblast, Russia
- Jonah, Biblical prophet
- Yona (singer), full name Yona Dannuncio, Finnish singer
- Yona Bogale, first leader of the Ethiopian Jewish community in Israel
- Yona Ettlinger, Israeli clarinetist
- Yona Friedman, Hungarian-born French architect
- Yona Kesse, Israeli politician
- Yona Kosashvili, Georgian chess grandmaster
- Yona Metzger, chief Ashkenazi rabbi of Israel
- Yona Reiss, American rabbi
- Yona Sabar, Iraqi linguist
- Yona Wallach, Israeli poet
- Yona Yahav, Israeli lawyer and politician
- Yona (film), a 2014 Israeli film
Yona is a 2014 Israeli drama film directed by Nir Bergman. It has been nominated for the Ophir Award for Best Film.