Bee Roots for 2021-11-17

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. The Halloween, 2021 redesign improved the usability, I hope.

Past clues are available here

Today's puzzle

Table content

root #answers coveredanswer's first two lettersanswer's lengthclue for root (answer may need prefix, suffix, tense change, alt spelling, ...)
31DA524-hour period
11DA6Mexican & Central Am. flowering plant (“Black …” 2006 de Palma film noir)
21DA7Fop, or foppish (“Yankee Doodle…” Cagney film)
41DA7Monet’s fav flower, one that lasts only 24 hrs.
51DI4What you turn on a rotary phone or radio knob
71DI4Pickle spice
81DI5Excellent example (that was a … of a game)
61DI6Worthless amount (… squat), or guitarist Bo
91DI10Waste time (compound)
101HA4Frozen rain “stone,” noun; or summon a taxi, verb
111HA7Convenient or skillful
121HI4What Jack & Jill went up
131HI4Rear (…leg), or Sir Francis Drake’s “Golden…” ship (obscure word for a ♀ deer)
151HI4Slang abbr. for “hello to you”
121HI5What Jack & Jill went up
141HI5♂ horse /♀ donkey hybrid
161ID4Not doing anything
171ID4Extremely happy scene or poem
171ID5Extremely happy scene or poem
181IL4not healthy, sick, adverb/noun; hardly, or only with difficulty, adverb (they could … afford the cost of a new car)
201IN5Decorate something by embedding pieces of a different material in it, flush with its surface
191IN6Not on the coast
201IN6Decorate something by embedding pieces of a different material in it, flush with its surface
222LA4Put something down
211LA5Hawaiian island or porch
231LI4Monet floral subject (water …)
251NA4Spike that’s hammered, noun/verb
241NA5Greek water nymph, or dragonfly larva
261NI5Foolish or silly person

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.