- Also called banyan tree. an East Indian fig tree, Ficus benghalensis, of the mulberry family, having branches that send out adventitious roots to the ground and sometimes cause the tree to spread over a wide area.
- Also bania, baniya. (in India)
- a Hindu trader or merchant of a particular caste, the rules of which forbid eating flesh.
- a loose shirt, jacket, or gown.
Origin of banyan
Examples from the Web for banian
They reached Fiji, went on shore, and there stood the Banian tree.The Solomon Islands and Their Natives
H. B. (Henry Brougham) Guppy
The Banian hospital at Surat is a most remarkable institution.An Introduction to Entomology: Vol. I (of 4)
Was that the banian tree of which he had been warned by the old Byragee at Surroori?Tara
Philip Meadows Taylor
Banian days, days when no meat is served out to ships' crews.The Nuttall Encyclopaedia
Edited by Rev. James Wood
The slopes on either hand are wooded, that of Banian to much the greatest extent.Herzegovina
- a variant spelling of banyan
- a moraceous tree, Ficus benghalensis, of tropical India and the East Indies, having aerial roots that grow down into the soil forming additional trunks
- a member of the Hindu merchant caste of N and W India
- a loose-fitting shirt, jacket, or robe, worn originally in India
Word Origin and History for banian
"Indian fig tree," 1630s, so called in reference to a tree on the Iranian coast of the Persian Gulf under which the Hindu merchants known as banians had built a pagoda. From Sanskrit vanija "merchant."