Bania (caste)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

A Goan Bania, early 1880s
Hindi, Marwari, Punjabi, Gujarati, Dialects of Marathi and Konkani.[1]

The Bania (otherwise known as Baniya, Vaniya, Vani, Vania and Vanya) is an occupational community of merchants, bankers, money-lenders, dealers in grains or in spices, and in modern times numerous commercial enterprises. The term is used in a wider sense in Bengal than it is elsewhere in India, where it is applied to specific castes.[2]

Etymologically related groups[edit]

A traditional Bania

In western India one merchant occupational group is called Vani or Vania; in Bengal the term is applied to all people who are involved in moneylending and similar activities.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Gazetteer of the Union Territory Goa, Daman and Diu: district gazetter by Vithal Trimbak Gune, Goa, Daman and Diu (India). Gazetteer Dept, published by Gazetteer Dept., Govt. of the Union Territory of Goa, Daman and Diu, 1979
  2. ^ a b Schrader, Heiko (1997). Changing financial landscapes in India and Indonesia: sociological aspects of monetization and market integration. LIT Verlag Münster. p. 68. ISBN 978-3-8258-2641-3. Retrieved 9 February 2012.

Further reading[edit]

  • Cheesman, David (1982). "'The Omnipresent Bania:' Rural Moneylenders in Nineteenth-Century Sind". Modern Asian Studies. 16 (3): 445–462. JSTOR 312116.
  • Metcalf, Thomas R. (December 1962). "The British and the Moneylender in Nineteenth-Century India". The Journal of Modern History. 34 (4): 390–397. JSTOR 1880056.