Bee Roots for 2022-12-10

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: Y/ACINRT
  • Words: 32
  • Points: 141
  • Pangrams: 1

Table content

  • with first two letters of answer and length
answers coveredanswer's first two lettersanswer's lengthclue for root (answer may need prefix, suffix, tense change, alt spelling, ...)
1AI4Spacious, well-lit, & well-ventilated (room); or breezy (attitude); adj.
1AR5Ordered series, esp. math
1AR4Creative activity: painting, music, literature, dance, etc
1CA6Small bird, popular as a pet, once used as a monitor for poison gas (… in a coal mine)
1CA5Shrewd; or soup tin adj.
1CA5Person who works in a traveling amusement (slang)
1CA5Lug around (fireman’s …), verb
1CA5Furry pet that purrs
1CI4Large town (NY, LA, Chicago, etc.)
1CR6Small, narrow space or opening
1CY4Greenish-blue (ink cartridge)
1CY5Doubter, pessimist
1IN7Stupid, silly, ridiculous (… questions or comments); adj.
1IN9Very complicated or detailed, pangram
1IT4Really small, slang; usually paired with rhyming B word
1NA5♀ goat, or nursemaid
1NA4Dialectic negation (I survived with … a scratch)
1NA5Well dressed, adj.
1NI5Foolish or silly person
1RA4Lively, entertaining, & mildly sexual; adj. (think car or horse speed contest)
1RA5Liquid precipitation
1RA6Uncommon; steak served with red inside
1RA5Sewer-dwelling rodent
1TA5Dark, thick, flammable liquid distilled from wood or coal
1TA5Worn & shabby, or of poor quality; Scottish
1TI5Silvery-white metal, atomic number 50 (Cat on a Hot … Roof)
1TI4Very small, adj., “Christmas Carol” kid
1TR4Use it to carry drinks
1TR7Christian doctrine of God in three persons; or first test of a nuclear bomb
2TY6,7Cruel and/or oppressive ruler
1YA4Knitting thread, or wild story

About this site

This site provides clues for a day's New York Times Spelling Bee puzzle. It follows in Kevin Davis' footsteps. The original set of 4,500 clues came from him, and they still make up about three quarters of the current clue set.

The "Bee Roots" approach is to provide explicit clues for root words, not every word. 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