1 Muslim: abstracted as a surname from Arabic ben ‘son of’, as in Bensoussan. This is quite commonly used as a surname among Muslims living in France.2 Italian (also Del Ben): from a dialect form of bene ‘well’. This form, without the preposition, is found only in Belluno province, in particular in Taibon Agordino.3 Indian (Gujarat): from Gujarati ben ‘sister’, from Sanskrit bhaginī, a title often attached to their given name by Gujarati women. It is not a true family name, but is sometimes used as a last name by women who do not have a surname.
Dictionary of American Family Names © Patrick Hanks 2003, 2006.