Bee Roots for 2022-01-07

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: N/CDORTU
  • Words: 40
  • Points: 207
  • Pangrams: 2

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, ...)
131CO4Veg on a cob
31CO5Sequence of 3 nucleotides in DNA
71CO5Self-owned apartment with an HOA, slang abbr.
151CO5Tally, verb; or title for Dracula & Monte Cristo, noun
21CO6Nest for butterfly larva, noun; or wrap up like one, verb
61CO6Agree (I…with your opinion), verb
81CO6Large vulture like bird
121CO6Line or circle of police, soldiers, or guards preventing access, noun/verb (they'll have to … off the building)
141CO6Soft fabric or its plant source
11CO7Tropical fruit in Mounds & Piña Colada
41CO7Create a mixed drink, potion, or wild story
51CO7Agreement or harmony among nations or other groups
91CO7Behavior, noun (disorderly …); or lead an orchestra, verb; or allow electricity to flow, verb
101CO7Twist or bend out of the normal shape
111CO7Outline, or mold into a specific shape designed to fit snugly, verb
91CO9Behavior, noun (disorderly …); or lead an orchestra, verb; or allow electricity to flow, verb
161CR5Hum or sing in a soft, low voice, especially in a sentimental manner (think Sinatra or Bublé)
171CR7Dried bread cube on a salad
201DO5Someone who gives (blood, organs, $)
211DO5Ring-shaped fried cake, modern spelling
221DU5Shoulder-shrug non-response to a question; “I have no idea”; slang
231NO412:00, midday, 🕛
241NO4In grammar, a person, place or thing
91NO12Behavior, noun (disorderly …); or lead an orchestra, verb; or allow electricity to flow, verb
251ON4Preposition when mounting an animal or boarding a large vehicle
261OR7Full, round, and imposing voice; or pompous writing
271OU6Sprint more quickly or farther in a footrace than someone else (compound)
281RO5Musical form with recurring theme, often final movement of a piece, from Italian
301RO5Circular, adj.
291RO6Plump (Saint Nick might be called this)
321RU4Smallest of the litter
311RU6Slight error in rotating tool
331TO4Animated film or character, slang abbr. (car-…)
341TO4Ripped, adj. or past participle
351TU4Change direction , verb (use your … signal when driving!)
361TU7Number of people who show up at an event (we had a great…last night for our poetry reading), compound
371UD4Japanese noodles
191UN4Perform an action, achieve or complete something; hairstyle (American slang); social event (British slang)
381UN4Archaic preposition (Handel’s Messiah “For … us a child is born”)
181UN5Divide into pieces with a knife or other sharp implement, verb/noun

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.