Bee Roots for 2021-12-05

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, ...)
11CH5Sloping channel for sliding things down (…s & Ladders game—AKA Snakes & Ladders)
21CH7Indian relish, pangram
31ET4Engrave metal, glass or stone (…ing); or corrode (…ed away by acid)
41EU6Castrated harem guard
51EY8Cuspid; canine (fang) below your peeper; (I’d give my … for)
61HE5Consequently, or in the future (…-forth)
81HU4Search for (scavenger …)
71HU5Intuition (acting on a …), or stoop down (“The …-back of Notre Dame”)
91HU5Rabbit cage, or open cabinet with shelves
101TE4Last word in name of Cambridge school M.I.T., abbr.
101TE5Last word in name of Cambridge school M.I.T., abbr.
111TE5What you use to chew, plural
131TE5Between nine and eleven
121TE6When the things you use to chew start to emerge, you chew on everything, and you drool all the time
141TE6Bad-tempered & irritable (mostly British)
151TH4Archaic form of “you”
161TH4At that time, or next; adv. (not always, but every now & …)
181TH4Plural non-gendered pronoun (… were delicious candies)
171TH6(Formal or archaic adv.) from a place previously mentioned, or as a result (…-forth means “from that time forward)
191YE4Tastes awful, exclamation, 2 spellings
191YE5Tastes awful, exclamation, 2 spellings

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.