-ee1 suffix repr. AN. -e(e), (O)F. -é :- L. -ātus, -ātum, endings (m. and n.) of pps. of vbs. in -are, as in dēputātus deputy, mandātum command (cf. MAUNDY). It occurs earliest (XV) in legal terms of AN. orig. denoting the recipient of a grant or the like, e.g. feoffee, grantee, lessee, patentee, on the model of which many others were made denoting the indirect obj. of vbs. The common correspondence of agent-nouns in -or or -er with nouns in -ee, e.g. lessor and lessee, obligor and obligee, led to the general application of the suffix, as in addressee. By mid- XVII -ee had become the regular repr. of F. -é in adopted words, e.g. debauchee. Later exx. are examinee, employee, escapee, in XX internee, evacuee.
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