Bee Roots for 2021-10-12

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
12CGive up (power or territory)
22CMake a baby bird sound
41CPretentious style (or almost 2X fashionable)
62CGambling token you cash in
71CIOU note, Navy memo
82CQuote as evidence
91DCause someone to believe something that is not true; give a false impression
102DMake up one’s mind
111DKilling of a god, noun
122DRepresent in a drawing or painting
132DNotice (Do I … a hint of lemon in this cake?)
142DSpotted cubes you roll, noun; or chop into cubes, verb
151DLimit your food intake, verb/noun
162DNarrow channel dug in the ground, typically used for drainage
171EOfficial order or proclamation
181ETechnical term for photographic memory
191ELong poem celebrating heroic feats, noun; or historically important, adj. (… struggle, … quest)
202EEngrave metal, glass or stone (…ing); or corrode (…ed away by acid)
211EA set of moral principles, especially ones relating to or affirming a specified group, field, or form of conduct
221HFull of incessant or frantic activity
232H“Psycho” director Alfred nickname, or slang for thumb a ride
243IFrozen water
252IWhat you scratch (an …)
261PMedical adj. for digestion (… ulcer)
272PSection of something larger (homophone of “tranquility” term), noun; or assemble (…together), verb
282PThrow a baseball towards home plate; advocate for a business deal
292TLast word in name of Cambridge school M.I.T., abbr.

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.