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See also: banyán and bànyǎn


English Wikipedia has an article on:
Ficus benghalensis
Wikispecies has information on:


Alternative forms[edit]


From Portuguese baniano, from Arabic بَنِيَان(baniyān), from Gujarati વાણિયો (vāṇiyo, merchant), from Sanskrit वाणिज (vāṇijá), from earlier वणिज् (vaṇíj, merchant, trader). The name appears to have been first bestowed popularly on a famous tree of this species growing near Bandar Abbas, under which the Bannians or Hindu traders settled at that port, had built a little pagoda.[1] Doublet of bunnia.


  • (UK, US) IPA(key): /ˈbæn.jən/
  • (file)


banyan (plural banyans)

  1. An Indian trader, merchant, cashier, or money changer.
  2. A tropical Indian fig tree, Ficus benghalensis, that has many aerial roots.
    • 1914, Teresa Frances & William Rose Benét, The East I Know, translation of original by Paul Claudel, page 33:
      We climb and then descend; we pass by the great banyan which, like Atlas, settling himself powerfully on his contorted haunches, seems awaiting with knee and shoulder the burden of the sky.
  3. A type of loose gown worn in India.
  4. (India) A vest; an undershirt; a singlet.
  5. (Britain, naval slang, dated) A camping excursion on shore, to give a ship's crew a break from shipboard routine.



See also[edit]


  1. ^ Yule, Henry, Sir. Hobson-Jobson (1903) A glossary of colloquial Anglo-Indian words and phrases, and of kindred terms, etymological, historical, geographical and discursive.[1], London: J. Murray