The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Banian \Ban"ian\ (b[a^]n"yan or b[a^]n*y[a^]n"; 277), n. [Skr.
banij merchant. The tree was so named by the English, because
used as a market place by the merchants.]
1. A Hindu trader, merchant, cashier, or money changer.
[Written also banyan.]
2. A man's loose gown, like that worn by the Banians.
3. (Bot.) The Indian fig. See Banyan.
Banian days (Naut.), days in which the sailors have no
flesh meat served out to them. This use seems to be
borrowed from the Banians or Banya race, who eat no flesh.