Bee Roots for 2021-08-17

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. The TL;DR about the site comes after the table.

Past clues are available here

Today's puzzle

Table content

wordsroot 1st letterclue
1ARelating to high mountains
1ABee-related adj.
1ASleep breathing disorder
1AHorrify (his tasteless jokes…me)
3AAsk for a court ruling to be reversed, verb/noun
1A1 of these fruits a day keeps the doctor away
1BCar horn sound, noun/verb
1BCover a profanity with a sound (…out)
1BUnexpected minor deviation, such as a (radar) screen spot
1EFencing sword
1LJacket edge that’s folded back
1LForceful jump (of faith?), noun/verb
1NScruff of the neck
1NTide with least difference between low & high water
1NBowling variation with 1 target less than standard; compound
1NTeat that babies suck on
1PSong of praise or triumph
1PSpanish rice, saffron, chicken, and seafood dish
1PBucket, NOT white-faced
1PSensation from an injury, noun/verb
1PTraditional Mexican shelter roofed with palm leaves or branches, esp. on a beach, noun
1PWhite-faced, NOT a bucket
1PFigurative dark cloud, or funeral "bearer"
1PArthropod antenna for touch & taste, or start of medical exam by touch term
1PSo intense (a feeling or atmosphere) as to seem almost physical (a…sense of loss), or can be felt by touch
1PSingle sheet of window glass
1PFlat component set into the surface of a door or wall; flat surface with instruments (control ...)
1PToasted Italian sandwich
1PFather, slang
1PPontiff adj.
2PSmall rounded bump on body part such as tongue (from Latin, and/or plural in some puzzles)
1PRepeated bell ringing or laughter
1PSmall rock (…Beach golf course near Monterey, CA)
2PSkin of a fruit, noun; or to remove it, verb
1PBackside of a hammer
1PBaby bird sound, Easter marshmallow, or a furtive look
1PRelating to punishment (law)
1P♂ sex organ
1PTube pasta, vodka optional
1PHeap, stack (dirty laundry, raked leaves, etc.), noun/verb
1PTablet of medicine
1PGame that involves small metal balls, a sloping table, and flippers; compound
1PEvergreen tree with cones, noun; or to long for, verb
1PTropical fruit with yellow flesh, segmented skin, and stiff leaves (major crop of Hawaii)
1PCopper or plastic tube that carries water, noun; or to move liquid in one, verb; decorate a cake with icing
1PTube that transports oil & gas, compound
1PFosse musical about Charlemagne’s son, or apple variety
1POrdinary, unadorned, NOT a 747; adj.
1PDetailed proposal (teacher’s lesson…), noun; or prepare in advance, verb
2PFlat geometric surface; or short for flying vehicle
1PUrgent request (Mercy!), or court statement of guilt or innocence
1PCommoner, slang insult, from Latin
2PMilitary academy cadet, slang
1PPuerto Rican music having a highly syncopated rhythm and often satirical lyrics
1PCan be bent or influenced easily, adj.
1PBallét bénd

About this site

This site provides clues for a day's New York Times Spelling Bee puzzle. It exists to make it easier for Kevin Davis to take a day off. Most of the clues come from him. There may be some startup problems, but long term I think I can put the clues together with no more than half an hour's work.

The "Bee Roots" approach is to provide explicit clues for root words, not every word. This is similar to what Kevin Davis does, but without information about parts of speech 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.

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

Many thanks to Kevin Davis, whose 4,500-word clue list made this possible.