Bee Roots for 2021-10-23

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
11AJoin something to something else
22AMath term for a number which is summed with another (the “1” or “2” in 1 + 2 = 3)
31A1 of the 4 bases in DNA
41AFurther forward in space or time; in the lead (sports)
61AAssistant to an important person, esp. military or political (…-de-camp), noun
71ALarge primate without a tail, including gorilla, chimpanzees, and orangutans, noun/verb
81AGarden pest (insect)
91ABee-related adj.
101ASleep breathing disorder
112ATack on supplemental material; ends in list word
121DFish by letting the fly bob lightly on the water
131DSmall Eurasian shrub with sweet-scented flowers & evergreen leaves, or “Danger–Prone” Scooby Doo teen
143DNot alive
152DRemove spent flowers from a plant (compound)
162DSay something funny with a straight face
171DCollege administrator, or actor James of “Rebel Without a Cause”
181EA group of 9, from Greek (such as the 9 Egyptian deities “The Great …”)
192HWhat sticks out of your sleeve
213HBody part that holds your brain, eyes, ears, nose and mouth
221HIn bowling, the target closest to you
231HStack in a disorderly pile, verb/noun
242HHair or temp. tattoo dye
251IThought or suggestion (here’s a new…), noun
261IStupid, silly, ridiculous (…questions or comments); adj.
271NIndiaan flaat breaad
281NNothing, Spanish
291NGreek water nymph, or dragonfly larva
301NGrandma, slang; or Peter Pan dog
311N♀ goat, or nursemaid
321NBrief period of sleep during the day
331NScruff of the neck
341NTide with least difference between low & high water
351PThick piece of soft material used to cushion something, noun/verb
361PSong of praise or triumph
372PSensation from an injury, noun/verb
381PSomething you cook food in, noun; try to find gold in a stream, verb; something a critic loves to do, verb
391PChinese bamboo-eating bear
402PSingle sheet of window glass
411PToasted Italian sandwich
421PFather, slang
431PGive $ in exchange for goods or services, verb/noun
441P♀ of a bird with showy plumage
452PStupid or foolish person, compound

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.