Bee Roots for 2022-02-03

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: A/CHNOVY
  • Words: 30
  • Points: 126
  • 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, ...)
11AC4Muscle, heart, tooth, or tummy dull pain
21AC5What a sneeze sounds like
31AH4Nautical greeting (“… there, matey!”)
71AN4Soon, poetically
41AN5Dried poblano pepper
61AN5Irritate, vex, irk
81AN6Informal, humorous subject-changer after an interruption or diversion; compound
51AN7Small fish, usually tinned, pangram
161CA4Spanish sparkling wine, or vein to heart (vena …)
91CA5Bean source of Hershey Bars
111CA5Tropical “lily”
131CA5Shrewd; or soup tin adj.
141CA5Nikon rival, or accepted (Church) lore, noun
101CA6Leggy French danceOpposite of occupied
121CA6Wheeled artillery
151CA6Deep gorge, from Spanish (“Grand”)
171CH6Possibility (there’s a small…) or serendipity (they met by …)
191CO41st part of popular soda brand name
181CO5Athletic instructor or trainer, noun/verb; bus, noun
201CO5Hot winter drink with marshmallows, or the powder it’s made from
211CY4Greenish-blue (ink cartridge)
221HA5Widespread destruction; or great confusion and disorder
231NA4Indiaan flaat breaad
251NA4Grandma, slang; or Peter Pan dog
271NA4Seafaring military force, or dark blue color
241NA5Tortilla chip topped with melted cheese and often other tasty toppings
261NA5♀ goat, or nursemaid
281NO4Star explosion, PBS science show, or Chevy model that doesn’t go (in Spanish)
291VA7Opposite of occupied
301YA5Exclamation ("I’m rich!"), or Web portal & search engine before Google!

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.