Bee Roots for 2022-01-10

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: B/ACGILO
  • Words: 34
  • Points: 133
  • 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, ...)
11AB5Bead calculator
181AB5Heat water to 212° F or 100°C
21AL5Criminal’s excuse
31BA4Rum sponge cake, or Ali & his 40 thieves
51BA4Fee to avoid prison, noun; scoop water out of a ship, or abandon, verb
61BA4Where Cinderella lost her slipper
71BA6African tree
41BA7Rod-shaped microorganism
91BI4Invoice, or actor Murray
81BI8Holy book (starts with Genesis)
301BI8Latin for lips, or lips of vagina
111BI10Study of living organisms
121BL4Reveal a secret by indiscreet talk
131BL4Gelatinous mass, or 1950s alien horror film
141BL4Group of like-minded voters
151BL4Online journal, noun/verb
161BO4Taiwan sweet tea with gelatin pearls
181BO4Heat water to 212° F or 100°C
191BO4Thrown weighted string weapon
201BO4Cotton seed target for weevil
211BO4Western string tie
221BO4Breast, slang
171BO5Italian game similar to lawn bowling
231BO6“Owie” you kiss & make better, mistake, or what 2 ghosts say
241BO8Far-right anti-government extremist movement & militia (… bois) ; starts with ghost scare word
251CA5Secret political faction
261CA6Jewish mysticism; usually starts with K
271GL4Insincere & shallow
281GL4Semi-liquid lump, as in cheese
291GL6Worldwide, adj., as in “… warming”
301LA5Latin for lips, or lips of vagina
301LA6Latin for lips, or lips of vagina
311LO4Wolf, Spanish

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.