I want to include my mother's maiden name on her gravestone. What is the proper form? ( I don't care for the use of nee.)

Which of the following is appropriate?

  1. First Name, Maiden name, Married name
  2. First name, (Maiden Name), Married name
  3. First Name, Married Name, (Maiden name)
  • 3
    It’s whatever pleases you the most. Take a vote among her close survivors. – Jim Jan 21 '17 at 22:21
  • 1
    The English part of this question has to do with the ( ). Forget the ( )! (And, of course, no commas.) The usual form would be First Name Maiden Name Married Name. For example, Elizabeth Brewster Smith. But the real guideline, is, what would your mother want? – ab2 Jan 21 '17 at 22:26
  • But in the UK, the maiden name isn't generally adopted as a surname like it appears to be in the US (Elizabeth Brewster Smith; Hillary Rodham Clinton...). So the answer is culture-dependent. In the UK, the usual form would be "Elizabeth Smith (née Brewster)" but I don't think I recall ever seeing maiden names mentioned on gravestones at all. I'm not convinced this is a question about the English language. – Andrew Leach Jan 21 '17 at 23:13
  • I would suggest you ask the undertaker or gravestone folks what practice is most accepted. – Hot Licks Jan 22 '17 at 2:00
  • @Andrew: the traditional usage in the U.S. is that the maiden name is used as a middle name, not as a surname. In previous centuries, some people gave only their sons and not their daughters middle names to leave room for the maiden name to be a middle name after they got married. – Peter Shor Jan 22 '17 at 3:04

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