Bee Roots for 2021-12-25

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
  • Letters: I/CENTVZ
  • Words: 33
  • Points: 159
  • Pangrams: 1

Table content

  • with first two letters of answer and length
root #answers coveredanswer's first two lettersanswer's lengthclue for root (answer may need prefix, suffix, tense change, alt spelling, ...)
11CI4Quote as evidence
31CI5Asian & African “cat” used for perfume
41CI5Popular Honda model, or municipal (adj.)
21CI7Legally recognized subject of a state or nation
51EN6Tempt or lure by offering pleasure or advantage
61EV5Kick out of an apartment
71EV6Formal verb: reveal the presence of (a quality or feeling) (his words … his excitement)
61EV7Kick out of an apartment
101IN5Concave belly button, slang
91IN6Provoke unlawful behavior (… a riot)
111IN6Determined to do (I’m … on finishing this puzzle), adj.; or objective, noun
131IN6Create something new (device, e.g.)
141IN6Ask someone to a party
141IN7Ask someone to a party
81IN9Something that motivates you (there’s no … to conserve water)
121IN9Abusive language used to express blame or to hurt (a stream of …)
131IN9Create something new (device, e.g.)
81IN11Something that motivates you (there’s no … to conserve water)
151NE7User of the web or online communities, especially an avid or compulsive one
161NI4Pleasant in manner, or city in SE France
181NI4Number of justices on Supreme Court
201NI4Part of the day when it’s dark, slang spelling
171NI5Your sibling’s daughter
191NI8One more than the number of holes on a golf course
221TI4Fork prong
231TI4Shade of color, noun; or darken car windows, verb
211TI5Archaic for shade of color, seen now only in “–URE of iodine”
241VE4Tube that returns blood to the heart
251VI4Bad habit, or “Miami …” police show
261VI4Climbing plant (Marvin Gaye “I Heard It Through The Grape…”)
271ZI4The US penny is now 97.5% this metal, element 30, which is also mixed with copper to make brass
281ZI4Periodical, abbr. (last syllable), esp. fan pub
291ZI4Tubular pasta

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.