The Yugh language, which died out in the 1970s, was closely related to Ket, the last surviving language of the Yeniseian family. Yugh was formerly spoken in the villages of Yartsevo and Vorogovo on the Yenisei River. The author of the dictionary was the last linguist to document the Yugh language, working with the last eight or ten speakers during 1961-1971. Based on this fieldwork, he compiled a full description of their language, as well as an extensive vocabulary.
The Yugh lexicon reflects a typical culture of hunter-gather-fishers living in a Siberian taiga and riverine environment. Many words also echo ancient aspects of spiritual culture. Because Yugh phonology and morphology preserve a number of archaic features no longer attested in Modern Ket, comparative data from Yugh is extremely helpful in helping reconstruct Proto-Yeniseian linguistic systems. The data presented here provide a solid basis for future scholarly work on the Yeniseian languages.