Bee Roots for 2022-03-23

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: O/CDIMTY
  • Words: 26
  • Points: 121
  • 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, ...)
61CO4Foolish old ♂, or water bird
11CO5Spherical or nearly spherical bacterium
21CO5Paid jokester, or “… book” with superheroes
31CO6Social harmony (formal), or international mutual recognition (legal)
41CO6Perpetrate, pledge, or put into a mental ward
51CO9Raw material or crop that’s traded, pangram
71DI5“Same here” or “same as above”
81DO4Extinct bird; or idiot, slang
91DO4Terrible fate (they fell to their …), or pioneering 1st person shooter game
91DO5Terrible fate (they fell to their …), or pioneering 1st person shooter game
101DO5Small round mark, noun/verb (… the i's and cross the t's)
111DO6Slang: company that relies largely on internet commerce
121ID5Slang phrase particular to a language (“raining cats & dogs”), noun
131ID5Dunce (Green Day’s “American…” album, & show)
131ID6Dunce (Green Day’s “American…” album, & show)
131ID7Dunce (Green Day’s “American…” album, & show)
151MO4Emotional state (happy, angry, sad, etc.)
161MO4Irrelevant, in law (it’s a … point)
141MO5Mother, familiar
151MO5Emotional state (happy, angry, sad, etc.)
171MO5Short phrase encapsulating beliefs of an institution (Marines’ “Semper Fi”)
181OD6Opposite of even (math); unusual
191OM4Leave out, verb
221TO4Short horn sound; noun/verb
201TO5“Hot” sweetened, spiced alcoholic drink
211TO6New Zealand small bird (Magnum, P.I star 1st name + breast, slang)

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.