How to get first 3 character of month name in WordPress?

I am creating my WordPress theme…
This way I can get the month when the post was published as a string:

<?php the_time('j'); ?>

Now I need only the first 3 characters of this string.

For example: JANUARY should be JAN, APRIL should be APR…

Read more here: How to get first 3 character of month name in WordPress?

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