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Updated June 9, 2019

Family name origins & meanings

  • Indian (Bengal) and Bangladeshi : Hindu (Brahman) name, the first element of which, Ban-, is a shortened form of the village name Bandoghat. The final element -jee is derived from jhā (greatly reduced form of Sanskrit upādhyāya ‘teacher’); thus, Banerjee ‘teacher from the village of Bandoghat’. In Bengali names formed with -jee, the initial element is believed to indicate a village granted by Ballal Sen, a legendary ancient king of Bengal, to the ancestor of the person bearing the surname. A Sanskrit version of this name, Vandyopadhyaya, was coined later, from the elements vandya ‘venerable’ + upādhyāya ‘teacher’.

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