noun \ˈban-yən, -ˌyan\

: an Indian tree with long branches that send roots down to the ground forming secondary trunks

Full Definition of BANYAN

:  an East Indian fig tree (Ficus benghalensis) of the mulberry family with branches that send out roots which grow down to the soil and form secondary trunks

Illustration of BANYAN

Origin of BANYAN

earlier banyan Gujarati trader, from Portuguese banean, probably from Tamil vāniyan trader, from Sanskrit vāṇija; from a tree of the species in Iran under which such traders conducted business
First Known Use: 1634

Rhymes with BANYAN


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Unusually shaped tree (Ficus benghalensis, or F. indica) of the fig genus in the mulberry family, native to tropical Asia. Aerial roots that develop from its branches descend and take root in the soil to become new trunks. The banyan reaches a height of up to 100 ft (30 m) and spreads laterally indefinitely. One tree may in time assume the appearance of a very dense thicket as a result of the tangle of roots and trunks.


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