Bee Roots for 2024-06-19

The table provides clues for the roots of words in today's NY Times Spelling Bee. You're responsible for prefixes, suffixes, tense changes, plurals, doubling consonants before suffixes, and alternate spellings of roots. An exception: since Sam won't allow S, when the root contains an S, the clue may be for a plural or suffixed form. "Mice" for example. If a clue isn't self-explanatory, try googling it. The TL;DR about the site comes after the table.

Past clues are available here

Today's puzzle
  • Letters: T/AIPRUY
  • Words: 47
  • Points: 195
  • Pangrams: 1

Table content

root #answers coveredanswer's first letterclue for root (answer may need prefix, suffix, tense change, alt spelling, ...)
11ASeparately (… from that), or in pieces (taken …)
21ASoviet admin system (…-chik)
31ACreative activity: painting, music, literature, dance, etc
41ALarge open-air or skylight covered space surrounded by a building, common in ancient Roman houses; an upper cavity of the heart
51AFlower oil for perfume
61IEnter forcibly or suddenly, verb; similar to what volcanoes do when they spew lava
71IReally small, slang; usually paired with rhyming B word
81PState or condition of being equal, esp. status or pay (achieve …), noun
91PSome but not all, or line combed into hair
101PMusical suite of variations, usually for a solo instrument
111PCelebration (birthday …, retirement …, toga …, e.g.)
121PPeppermint candy (& friend of Marcie in “Peanuts”) or burger form
131PGround-dwelling bird that wags its tail & is named for its song
141PFlat bread with a pocket, often dipped in hummus or filled with falafel
151PRhyming, usually hyphenated, adv. for rapid beating (my heart went …)
161PTiny gland attached to brain base that controls metabolism & growth, pangram
171PFeeling of sorrow for someone who’s had misfortunes, noun or verb (Mr. T: “I … the fool”)
181PBrit slang for a fool or butt (“…fall”); similar to “Jurassic Park” actor Chris
191PNot mixed with anything else, adj.; or without anything unnecessary; or free of contamination
201PHit a golf ball gently on the green
211P(Silly?) paste used to seal window glass
221RIndian yogurt veg dip
231RFascinated, mesmerized; adj.
241RUncommon; steak served with red inside
251RSewer-dwelling rodent
261RMachine gun sound
271RDevice to catch large rodents, or a run-down place, compound
281RLong deep track made by the repeated passage of the wheels of vehicles
291TSpanish bar snack (usually plural)
301TAnimal similar in appearance to a pig, lives in Central & S America & SE Asia
311TDark, thick, flammable liquid distilled from wood or coal
321TWaterproof sheet used as outdoor roof, abbr.
331TOpen filled pastry, noun; or sharp taste, adj.
341TFish sauce, or tooth buildup
351TWorn & shabby, or of poor quality; Scottish
361TNot slack, as a rope, adj.
371TJeweled, ornamental ½ crown
381TThe end of a pointed thing, noun; money given for good service, noun/verb
391TCharacteristic, often genetically determined (left-handedness, e.g.)
401TDevice for catching things
411TUse it to carry drinks
422TJourney, noun (you’ve won a … to Paris!), or stumble (… over your own 2 feet), verb
431TAll together, musically (Italian); Little Richard “Wop bop a loo bop” song
441TBallet skirt, or S Afr Bishop Desmond
451UOften-racist adj. meaning “not staying in one’s proper place,” or snooty & arrogant
461YCircular tent of felt or skins

About this site

This site provides clues for a day's New York Times Spelling Bee puzzle. It follows in Kevin Davis' footsteps. The original set of 4,500 clues came from him, and they still make up about three quarters of the current clue set.

The "Bee Roots" approach is to provide explicit clues for root words, not every word. As logophiles, we are pretty good at putting on prefixes and suffixes, changing tense, and forming plurals (including Latin plurals!). The clues cover root words, arranged alphabetically by root word, with a count of words in the puzzle that come from each root. For example, if a puzzle includes ROAM and ROAMING, there will be a clue for ROAM and a count of 2. The root may not appear in the puzzle at all; for example, the 2021-07-23 Bee included ICED, DEICE, and DEICED. For such a puzzle, the clue would be for ICE with a word count of 3.

The Bee Roots approach involves judgement sometimes. For example, if a puzzle includes LOVE, LOVED, and LOVELY, how many roots are needed to cover them? LOVE and LOVED share the root LOVE, certainly, but LOVELY is tricky. LOVE is part of its etymology, but by now, the word means "exquisitely beautiful," which is a lot farther from the meaning of LOVE than swithcing to past tense. I'm inclined to treat LOVE and LOVELY as separate roots. You may not agree, which is fine. Another thing we logophiles share is a LOVE of arguing about words on Twitter.

A few words can have one meaning as a suffixed form and another as a stand-alone word. EVENING, for example. In those cases I will use the meaning that I think is more common.

One last complication, until another one pops up: a few roots have multiple spellings, for example LOLLYGAG and LALLYGAG. Depending on the day's letters, and maybe even the editor's whims, one or both could be in the puzzle's answer list. With such roots, you could see a word count of 2, even if there are no applicable prefixes or suffixes.

I will do my best to keep this site up to date and helpful (I hope). Check it out, and tweet feedback to @donswartwout Tweet to @donswartwout