Bee Roots for 2023-02-06

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: I/ACFLNU
  • Words: 30
  • Points: 157
  • 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, ...)
1AC6African or Australian wattle tree
1AC4Trendy smoothie berry
1AN6Ring-shaped object, structure, or region
1CA7Branch of mathematics pioneered by Newton and Leibniz; or concretion of minerals formed within the body, especially in the kidney or gallbladder
1CI5Short microscopic hairlike vibrating structure found in large numbers on the surface of certain cells; (anatomy) eyelash
1CL5Steep rock face (white ones of Dover)
3CL6,8,9Medical facility (health …)
1FA6Front part of head containing eyes, nose, & mouth 😀; noun/verb
1FA4Don’t pass a test
1FA8Over-imaginative, unrealistic, whimsical (person, thoughts, or ideas); pangram adj.
1FA6Slang abbr. for a book genre (romcom, e.g.) of stories written by amateurs & featuring existing characters from TV shows, movies, or books
1FI6Of or due from a son or daughter, adj.
1FI4Add material until the container or hole is at capacity
1FI5Last one (… exam, “… Countdown”)
1FI9Provide funding for (a car or house, e.g.), verb/noun
1FI6Ornament at end or top of an object
1FL5Swing (arms) wildly
1FU7Bring to reality (… your dreams), or carry out a duty (… your obligations)
1IL5Hip bone
1IN6Add material until the container or hole is at capacity
1LA5Hawaiian island or porch
1LA4Put something down
1LI5Purple flower or shade
1NA4Inexperienced person (from French)
1NA4Spike that’s hammered, noun/verb
1NI6Vitamin B3

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.

A few words can have one meaning as a suffixed form and another as a stand-alone word. EVENING, for example. In those cases I will use the meaning that I think is more common.

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