Bee Roots for 2021-11-19

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, ...)
11AF6Extramarital dalliance
21AF6“Swear” alternative in an oath
31AF6Archaic var. of a list word: legal term for public brawl
61AI4Spacious, well-lit, & well-ventilated (room); or breezy (attitude); adj.
41AI6What you breathe
51AI7Letters transported by plane (compound)
71AL5Warning (bell)
81AR4Opera solo
91AR4Seed covering
101AR4Military land force, Navy football rival
111AR5Ordered series, esp. math
161FA4Place for growing crops
131FA5Tinker Bell, e.g.
141FA8Well known from long association, or witch’s animal companion
141FA10Well known from long association, or witch’s animal companion
171FI4Hard (tofu) or unmoving
171FI6Hard (tofu) or unmoving
181FL5Aptitude (for languages, e.g.) or panache
201FR4Become worn at the edge (cloth) or tip (rope), verb; or a battle, noun
191FR5Weak & delicate
211FR5Monk (… Tuck of “Robin Hood”)
221FR5Decorative or unnecessary extra, noun + adj.
211FR6Monk (… Tuck of “Robin Hood”)
221FR6Decorative or unnecessary extra, noun + adj.
231LA4Animal or criminal den
241LI4Someone who doesn’t tell the truth
251LI4₺ or ₤, Turkish or old Italian $
281MA4Old-timey schoolteacher honorific
291MA5Wed, verb
261MA7Ague, or swamp fever from mosquitoes
271MA7Milk-producing gland
261MA8Ague, or swamp fever from mosquitoes
311RA4What a train travels on, or what you hold on stairs
321RA5Mass meeting of people for a common cause (pep, political)
301RA6African palm tree, or its fiber in hats, mats, & baskets
331RA6Technical verb meaning to form branches, used commonly as a noun with –CATIONS to mean consequences of action
341RI4$ in Iran, Oman, & Yemen
351RI4Short repeated phrase in pop & jazz (guitar)
371RI4Small stream
381RI5$ in Saudi Arabia
361RI8Undesirable people, overflow room on “Ellen"

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.