Bee Roots for 2022-03-21

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: V/AEHILY
  • Words: 31
  • Points: 117
  • 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, ...)
171AL5Exist, verb; or not on tape (TV show), adj.
11AV5Make use of (… yourself of), or use (to no …)
21EA4Roof overhang, NOT Adam’s mate
31EV4Wicked (ELO’s “… Woman”, Santana's "… Ways")
31EV6Wicked (ELO’s “… Woman”, Santana's "… Ways")
61HA4Possess, or experience (“… a good time!”), verb
41HA5Middle eastern candy made from sesame paste
51HA5Divide into 2 equal parts (½ as a verb)
41HA6Middle eastern candy made from sesame paste
71HE5Lift or raise a thing with great effort (“… Ho!”)
81HE5Weighing a lot; opposite of light
91HE5Obscure word for tool or weapon handle; start of “Swiss” font name
81HE7Weighing a lot; opposite of light
101HI4Bee nest (…mind)
111LA4Molten rock from a volcano
161LE4Impose a tax, homophone of embankment above, verb
131LE5Depart, verb
141LE5River embankment to prevent flooding
151LE5Flat, adj.; or straightening tool with bubble, noun
171LI4Exist, verb; or not on tape (TV show), adj.
171LI6Exist, verb; or not on tape (TV show), adj.
181VA4Low area of land between mountains (… of Tears)
201VA5Device that controls passage of fluid or air (shut-off …, heart …)
191VA6Low area of land between hills or mountains, typically with a river or stream flowing through it
211VE4Calf meat (… Parmesan)
221VE4Bride’s face covering
231VI4Small glass container (… of poison), NOT despicable
241VI4Despicable, NOT a small glass container; adj.
251VI5Large & luxurious country house (Roman …)
241VI6Despicable, NOT a small glass container; adj.

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.