-ee

-ee

a suffix forming from transitive verbs nouns which denote a person who is the object or beneficiary of the act specified by the verb (addressee; employee; grantee ); recent formations now also mark the performer of an act, with the base being an intransitive verb (escapee; returnee; standee ) or, less frequently, a transitive verb (attendee ) or another part of speech (absentee; refugee ).

Origin:
< French -é, (masculine), -ée (feminine), past participle endings < Latin -ātus, -āta -ate1

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-ee
 
suffix forming nouns
1.  indicating a person who is the recipient of an action (as opposed, esp in legal terminology, to the agent, indicated by -or or -er): assignee; grantee; lessee
2.  indicating a person in a specified state or condition: absentee; employee
3.  indicating a diminutive form of something: bootee
 
[via Old French -e, -ee, past participial endings, from Latin -ātus, -āta-ate1]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

-ee
in legal English (and in imitation of it), represents the Anglo-Fr. -é ending of pps. used as nouns. As these sometimes were coupled with agent nouns in -or, the two suffixes came to be used as a pair to denote the initiator and the recipient of an action.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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