Bee Roots for 2022-12-15

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: N/DEGHLT
  • Words: 34
  • Points: 159
  • 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, ...)
2DE4,6Make an impression on a car bumper after a collision, verb/noun
1DE7Easing of hostility between countries (French)
1EN5Final part of something, especially a period of time, an activity, or a story, noun/verb
1EN7Friendly understanding between countries (French)
1GE4DNA sequence that determines traits, or singing cowboy Autry
1GE4♂ counterpart to “lady,” slang abbr.
1GE7Polite, refined, or respectable
2GE6,7Tender (… caress or touch), moderate, or soft, adj./verb
1GL4Narrow valley, or Eagles singer Frey
1HE5Prehistoric circular monument (Stone…)
1LE6Mythical story “(Sleepy Hollow,” e.g.), or singer John married to Chrissy Teigen
1LE4Allow someone to borrow from you (“Friends, Romans, Countrymen, … me your ears”)
3LE6,8,10End to end measurement, noun
1LE4Pre–Easter holiday when you give up meat, noun; or “borrowed” counterpart, verb
2NE4,6Require; verb/noun
2NE6,7Tool to sew, noun; or goad, verb
1NE4Hawaiian goose & state bird
1NE6Open-meshed fabric twisted, knotted, or woven together at regular intervals, noun/verb
2NE6,7“Stinging” plant, noun; or to annoy, verb
1TE4Adolescent (…ager), or numbers 13–19
1TE5Between nine and eleven
2TE4,6Frequently behave in a certain way, or look after (serve drinks at a bar, e.g.), present + past
1TE5Recent Christopher Nolan time-travel film, or a principle or belief
2TE4,6Shelter you sleep in while camping
1TH4At that time, or next; adv. (not always, but every now & …)

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