Bee Roots for 2022-09-18

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: A/DILTVY
  • Words: 38
  • Points: 165
  • Pangrams: 1
Source: Saffron Blaze - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Wikipedia

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, ...)
21AL4Friend (person, country) who joins you for a common purpose in a conflict
191AL4Illumination (Let there be …); noun/verb
11AL5Put (fears) at rest
271AT5Move into a sloping position, or fight windmills (… at)
41AV4Eager for or enthusisatic about (… reader)
31AV5Make use of (… yourself of), or use (to no …)
41AV6Eager for or enthusisatic about (… reader)
41AV7Eager for or enthusisatic about (… reader)
71DA4Facts & stats, computer info, or Star Trek Next Gen android
51DA5Papa (… long legs, sugar …)
61DA5Move slowly, or have casual sex with
81DA524-hour period
101DA6Illuminated by the sun (but not at night), compound adj.
91DA7Monet’s fav flower, one that lasts only 24 hrs.
111DI4What you turn on a rotary phone or radio knob
131DI4Famous female opera singer; self-important person who is temperamental and difficult to please
121DI10Waste time (compound)
141DY4Something that consists of 2 parts, from Greek (Kylo Ren & Rey, e.g.)
151LA4♀ counterpart of gentleman ("… & the Tramp")
171LA4Molten rock from a volcano
181LA4Put something down
201TA4Dogs wag this hind appendage
211TA4Of greater than average height, adj.
241TA4Ankle bone
231TA5Add up (keep a running …, or …–Ho! The quarry is in sight)
251TA5Worn & shabby, or of poor quality; Scottish
221TA6Fringed prayer shawl
261TI5Ocean ebb & flow at the beach, or laundry soap brand
261TI7Ocean ebb & flow at the beach, or laundry soap brand
281VA5Having a sound basis in logic or fact; legally binding
281VA7Having a sound basis in logic or fact; legally binding
281VA8Having a sound basis in logic or fact; legally binding
291VI4Small glass container (… of poison), NOT despicable
301VI5Large & luxurious country house (Roman …)
311VI5Essential, or lively (… signs)
311VI7Essential, or lively (… signs)
311VI8Essential, or lively (… signs)

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.