From Academic Kids

The French word née (feminine) or (masculine) (or the English word nee) is still commonly used in some newspapers when mentioning the maiden name of a woman in engagement or wedding announcements. The word nee is also used to denote former names, (as opposed to birth names), and earlier names of inanimate entities such as companies and products. is the past participle of naître (to be born) and means born in the French language.

In common usage, it often appears like this:

Jane Doe (née Dawson) announced the birth of a baby...

The "née" indicates that Jane's last name had changed from Dawson to Doe. Sometimes, the person's entire original name is written, but that is usually only in special cases: conventionally, née indicates a birth name, that is, a surname, as forenames are deemed to be given after birth, as at christenings. Nee (without accent or gender, as an English word) indicates a former name, rather than necessarily a birth name.

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