Bee Roots for 2022-01-24

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: T/CGHINP
  • Words: 31
  • Points: 167
  • 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, ...)
11CH4IOU note, Navy memo
21CH6Fibrous substance forming the exoskeleton of arthropods
31CI6Quote as evidence
41HI4Clue, suggestion, noun/verb
61HI5“Psycho” director Alfred nickname, or slang for thumb a ride
41HI7Clue, suggestion, noun/verb
51HI7Strike with a hand, tool, or weapon, verb/noun; popular song or movie
61HI8“Psycho” director Alfred nickname, or slang for thumb a ride
71IG8Catch fire, or cause to do so
81IN8Provoke unlawful behavior (… a riot)
91IT4What you scratch (an …)
91IT7What you scratch (an …)
101NI5Period of the day when it’s dark; add a letter to end of above
111NI5Ordinal number: last baseball inning, or Beethoven’s choral symphony featuring “Ode to Joy”
121PI416 fluid oz., or typical UK beer serving
161PI4White layer under citrus fruit rind, or essence
131PI5Ground-dwelling bird that wags its tail & is named for its song
151PI5Throw a baseball towards home plate; advocate for a business deal
141PI7Large hole in the ground, noun; set someone in competition against, verb
151PI8Throw a baseball towards home plate; advocate for a business deal
181TH4Skinny, adj. (… Mints)
171TH5Part of leg between hip & knee
191TH5Unnamed object, noun (person, place, or …)
181TH8Skinny, adj. (… Mints)
231TI4Shade of color, noun; or darken car windows, verb
201TI5Having no slack (all my pants have become too … since the lockdown started), adj.
211TI5Archaic for shade of color, seen now only in “–URE of iodine”
221TI7Color slightly (…ed with pink), verb/noun
231TI7Shade of color, noun; or darken car windows, verb
241TI7The end of a pointed thing, noun; money given for good service, noun/verb
251TI7Give 10% of your income to the Church

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.