Bee Roots for 2022-02-28

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. An exception: since Sam won't allow S, when the root contains an S, the clue may be for a plural or suffixed form. "Mice" for example. If a clue isn't self-explanatory, try googling it. The TL;DR about the site comes after the table.

Past clues are available here

Today's puzzle
  • Letters: I/ABDLOR
  • Words: 51
  • Points: 204
  • 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, ...)
161AB5Heat water to 212° F or 100°C
11AI5Garlic mayonnaise, from French for garlic
21AI7Compound hoops term that ends in list word: a shot that misses the basket rim & backplate
31AL5Criminal’s excuse
51AR4Opera solo
61AR4Dry (climate or land), adj.
71AR4Seed covering
41AR7Variety of round-grained Italian rice used in making risotto
81BA4Fee to avoid prison, noun; scoop water out of a ship, or abandon, verb
91BA6Legal term for one who transfers possession but not ownership of property to the custody of another
101BA6Spanish term for “neighborhood”
111BI4Invoice, or actor Murray
151BI4An avian; it has wings & a beak (crow, robin, etc.)
131BI8Usually-plural formal term for the game of pool
141BI8Geometry & anatomy term for symmetry that is both left/right & also around its central axis; starts with Latin “2” prefix & ends in a modern tire type
291BI8Latin for lips, or lips of vagina
121BI9Large outdoor advertising poster, or music industry magazine; compound pangram
161BO4Heat water to 212° F or 100°C
201BR4Vigor, Italian; often used in music as “allegro con …”
171BR5Hair or challah weave, noun/verb
181BR5Thicket of prickly shrubs (… patch)
211BR5Cook by direct exposure to heat (under the burner, e.g.)
191BR6Woman who is getting married
221DI4What you turn on a rotary phone or radio knob
241DI4Pickle spice
231DI5Phallus-shaped sex toy
251DR4Archaic word for a very small amount, noun; or to let fall, verb; …s & [dreary and dull]s; start of bouncing a game orb when moving on the court, or what small amounts of liquid do when falling
261DR5Power tool with bits for making holes, or practice for an emergency (fire…); noun
271DR5Star Wars robot (R2D2, C3PO, BB–8), or last syllable of Google phone OS (An…)
281ID4Punk rocker Billy; “American…” TV singing contest; or public figure you worship (…-ize)
301LA4Animal or criminal den
311LA4Put something down
291LA5Latin for lips, or lips of vagina
291LA6Latin for lips, or lips of vagina
321LI4Someone who doesn’t tell the truth
341LI4₺ or ₤, Turkish or old Italian $
331LI6Sex drive
351OL4Mixture, or spicy Spanish stew, NOT margarine
411RA4Sudden attack, as in “air” or police;” or insect spray
421RA4What a train travels on, or what you hold on stairs
361RA5Jewish minister or teacher
371RA5Adj. for a dog frothing at the mouth or a fanatical person
391RA5AM/FM music & talk device in car & home
401RA5Distance from a point on a circle to the center
381RA6Modern tire design; or arranged like spokes of a wheel, adj. + adv.
431RA8Spectator at a horse race who watches from the fence along the track; compound; starts with bar synonym; ends in avian list word
441RA8Trains & tracks, compound noun; ends in below (“I’ve been working on the…”)
451RI4$ in Iran, Oman, & Yemen
471RI4Small stream
461RI6Referring to sexual matters in an amusingly coarse or irreverent way, adj.; ends in list word
481RO4Stir up mud or trouble (…-ed the waters)

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.