from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A member of the second-lowest of the four major castes of traditional Indian society, comprising farmers, herders, merchants, and businessmen.
- adj. Of or relating to the class of Vaisyas.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Alternative form of Vaishya.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. The third of the four great original castes among the Hindus, now either extinct or partially represented by the mercantile class of Banyas. See the Note under caste, 1.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A member of the third caste among the Hindus—that is to say, of the main body of the Aryan people, as distinguished on the one hand from the priestly and noble classes, the Brahmans and Kshatriyas, and on the other hand from the subjugated aborigines, the Sudras and others, and from degraded outcasts. In modern times they are divided into many sub-castes.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a member of the mercantile and professional Hindu caste; the third of the four main castes
- n. the third of the four varnas: the commoners or yeoman farmers or mercantile and professional category
Sanskrit vaiśyaḥ, settler, homesteader, from viśaḥ, house; see weik-1 in Indo-European roots.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)