Bee Roots for 2022-01-09

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: V/CEILOT
  • Words: 31
  • Points: 131
  • Pangrams: 1
Source: Wikipedia: Николай Усик / - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

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, ...)
11CI5Asian & African “cat” used for perfume
21CI5Popular Honda model, or municipal (adj.)
31CI5Non-military, or polite; adj.
41CL5Spice used in cooking & cigarettes
61CO4Small sheltered bay (“Pirate’s …”)
71CO5Yearn to possess (thy neighbor’s wife)
111CO8Develop gradually (Darwin said that humans …-ed from apes), verb
51CO10Gather (used plates), solicit & receive (charity $), or acquire (rare coins); verb
81EL8Vote into office
101EV4Wicked (ELO’s “… Woman”, Santana's "… Ways")
91EV5Kick out of an apartment
111EV6Develop gradually (Darwin said that humans …-ed from apes), verb
91EV7Kick out of an apartment
121LE5River embankment to prevent flooding
131LE5Flat, adj.; or straightening tool with bubble, noun
141LI4Exist, verb; or not on tape (TV show), adj.
151LO4The ♥ in I♥NY, or “zero” in tennis
161OL5Small oval fruit with a hard pit, green when unripe, brownish black when ripe
171VE4Bride’s face covering
191VE4Presidential rejection of a Congressional bill, noun/verb
181VE6Soft fabric, developing antler cover, or Lou Reed’s “… Underground” rock band
201VI4Bad habit, or “Miami …” police show
211VI4Despicable, NOT a small glass container; adj.
221VI46–stringed upright Renaissance fiddle
231VI6Bluish purple; or a flower of that color; opposite end of the visible light spectrum from red
261VO4Small burrowing rodent AKA field mouse
271VO4Unit of electric potential (110 … socket)
281VO4What you do on Election Day, noun/verb
241VO5Sound of a person speaking, or NBC singing competition show
251VO5Thin, semitransparent fabric
291VO6Pledged (offering), adj. (she lit a … candle at the altar)

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.