Bee Roots for 2023-02-07

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: E/AIKLTV
  • Words: 55
  • Points: 228
  • 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, ...)
1AL6(Bio term) 1 of 2 or more versions of a gene
1AL9Make suffering less severe
1AL5Similar, adj.; or find agreeable or enjoyable, verb
1AL5Exist, verb; or not on tape (TV show), adj.
1AV6Pilot or fly in a plane, verb (from Latin for bird)
1EA4Roof overhang, NOT Adam’s mate
1EL5Make someone ecstatically happy, verb
1EL7Raise up, verb
1EL5Select group that’s superior
1EV4Wicked (ELO’s “… Woman”, Santana's "… Ways")
1KA4Trendy lettuce (but really leaf cabbage)
1KE4Bottom stabilizing ridge of a boat or ship, noun; or capsize, verb
1KE6Large metal pot for cooking, usually with a handle (thats's a fine … of fish)
1KI4Flying toy with a string & tail
1KV5feel happy and proud (Yiddish)
1LA4Large body of freshwater (Great ones are Erie, Superior, etc.)
1LA4Running behind (I’m … for class), or deceased (The … Charles Grodin)
1LA5Potato pancake, usually served with sour cream
1LA5Coffee with espresso & steamed milk
1LE4Place where water escapes a pipe or hose, or info spilled to a reporter
1LE5Depart, verb
1LE4Veg similar to onion; homophone of place where water escapes a pipe
1LE5River embankment to prevent flooding
1LE5Flat, adj.; or straightening tool with bubble, noun
1LE8Rise or cause to rise and hover in the air
1LI4Similar, adj.; or find agreeable or enjoyable, verb
1LI4Low-calorie or low-fat in ad-speak (Miller … beer)
1LI6Small (Stuart or Chicken …), adj.
1LI4Exist, verb; or not on tape (TV show), adj.
1TA4Reach for and hold; remove (… away)
1TA4Story (fairy…), NOT what dogs wag; noun
2TA6,9Speak (… to the hand!)
1TA6Rat out your sibling to your parents
1TA10Someone who rats out a sibling (compound)
1TE4Wood from India and Southeast Asia used in shipbuilding and for making furniture
1TE9Device for brewing a hot drink popular in Asia and England; it may whistle when the water boils, compound
1TE4Blue-green color, or a duck with a stripe of that color
1TE4Inform, verb; or Swiss archer William with an overture
1TE8Revealing, compound adj.; or indication, compound noun (Poe’s “The … Heart”)
1TI4Thin ceramic wall, counter, flooring, or roofing square
1TI9Stimulate or excite, especially in a sexual way
1TI8Spiff up (clothing or appearance), obscure verb
1TI5Name of a book, movie, or job, noun/verb
1TI6Dot above an i or j, or really small amount
1VA4Low area of land between mountains (… of Tears)
1VA5Parking attendant, or one who helps you dress
1VA5Device that controls passage of fluid or air (shut-off …, heart …)
1VE4Calf meat (… Parmesan)
1VE4Bride’s face covering
1VE6Soft fabric, developing antler cover, or Lou Reed’s “… Underground” rock band
1VI4Despicable, NOT a small glass container; adj.
1VI7Formal, obscure verb meaning spoil or impair; or legal term meaning destroy or annul the force & effect of an act or instrument; (also Star Wars Sith Emperor Tenebrae)

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