Bee Roots for 2023-01-13

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: U/AELNTX
  • Words: 38
  • Points: 171
  • 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, ...)
1AN6Yearly, adj.
1AN5Void a marriage
1AT9Weaken (… the effects of), physics term
1AT6Sync the pitch of instruments before concerts
1AU4Parent’s sister
1EX6Direction in a script: a group of characters leave the stage
1EX9Mitigate (he wasn’t punished due to …-ing circumstances)
2EX5,8Feel triumphant or jubilant, verb (adjective form is a pangram)
1LU4Hawaiian BBQ
1LU4Soothe (… into a false sense of security), verb; or a pause in activity, noun
1LU4Doozy, or “To Sir With Love” singer
1LU4Roman moon goddess, or nutrition bar brand
1LU6Crescent-moon-shaped carpal bone, noun
1LU4Moon, French (Debussy’s “Clair de …”)
1LU7½–moon shaped architectural space, starts with above; from French “little moon”
2LU6,7½–moon shaped fingertip base white area (Latin "little moon")
1LU4Older guitar relative
1LU6Phase between ovulation & start of menstruation; anatomy adj.; begins with old guitar relative
1LU4Expensive and of high quality, adj./noun
1NU4Having no legal or binding force; invalid
1TA5Provoke with words
2TA4,6Not slack, as a rope, adj.
1TE7Short, written message sent by a mobile phone to another one
1TU5Lightweight, stiff veil or gown fabric
1TU4Chicken of the sea (Ahi …)
1TU4Sync the pitch of instruments before concerts
1TU6Artificial underground passage (Lincoln or Holland…from NJ to Manhattan, e.g.)
1TU5Private instructor
1TU4Ballet skirt, or S Afr Bishop Desmond
2UL4,5Forearm bone opposite radius
1UL7Make a high-pitched wail as an expression of grief, imitative verb
1UN7Consume food
1UN5Allow; rent
1UN6Sync the pitch of instruments before concerts

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