Bee Roots for 2021-09-10

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

clue #words coveredroot 1st letterclue
11CLump of blood that stops bleeding or circulation
21CGather (used plates), solicit & receive (charity $), or acquire (rare coins); verb
31CFlange or socket for setting a gem
41CYoung ♂ horse
51CIcy solar system body with a tail
61CTake part in a contest, strive to win
71CHaving all the necessary or appropriate parts, adj.; finish making or doing something, verb
81CFruit preserved or cooked in syrup
91CUsually hyphenated verb: take for your own use or for another purpose
101CFoolish old ♂, or water bird
111CDove shelter, NOT a jacket
122EVote into office
131EHam it up as an actor
141LMove from one place to another, verb (usually a noun with -ive suffix meaning what moves a train)
151LPirate treasure, noun; or to steal during a riot, verb
161LState-sponsored numbers betting ticket (Powerball, e.g.)
171MEncounter (I’m supposed to…him in the park)
181MWhat ice cream does when you leave it out of the freezer, verb
191MDispense justice (“…out punishment”), homophone of “animal flesh for consumption”
201MPerson’s ability to cope with adversity (test your…), NOT iron or tin; noun
211MShed feathers, hair, or skin; verb
221MIrrelevant, in law (it’s a...point)
231MSmall endearingly sweet child
241MSpeck of dust
251MPlace to sleep when you’re travelling (…6, e.g.)
261MShort piece of sacred choral music, typically polyphonic & unaccompanied
271MPattern of irregular spots; usually an adj.
281MShort phrase encapsulating beliefs of an institution (Marines’ “Semper Fi”)
291OSmall S Am wild cat
301OGroup of 8 (musicians)
312OFried eggs folded around fillings such as cheese
321PSmall, rounded, compressed mass (food, buckshot, rabbit dung)
331PBombard (with snowballs), verb; or animal fur, noun
341PScheme, noun or verb (Roth’s “The … Against America”); or storyline in fiction
351PAuthor of verse
361P(Historical or British) sweet or pretty child, or voodoo doll
371TBe full or swarming with; homophone of Yankees group
382TNative Am conical hut
391TIndustry built around transmitting information
401TInform, verb; or Swiss archer William with an overture
411TOffice worker fill-in, slang abbr.
421TBuilding devoted to the worship of one or more deities
431TSpeed at which a passage of music is played; more generally, pace of an activity
441TEntice (as a donut to a dieter, e.g.), verb
451TRoad use fee (collected at a booth)
461TLarge, heavy book
471TAn implement (hammer & screwdriver, e.g.); often stored in a
481TShort horn sound; noun/verb
491TDrive or move in a leisurely manner, or play gently or repeatedly on a flute
501TSmall grayish slender-bodied shark, or mango tree grove; homophone of grayish-brown color
511TBecome unsteady & fall, or knock over (think regime change); verb
521TReusable bag, noun; or schlep, verb
531TSymbolic object (…pole)

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.