Bee Roots for 2023-02-08

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: O/DIMRTY
  • Words: 46
  • 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, ...)
1DI5“Same here” or “same as above”
1DO4Extinct bird; or stupid person, slang
2DO4,5Terrible fate (they fell to their …), or pioneering 1st person shooter game
1DO4Room or bldg. entrance
1DO4Student housing abbr.
1DO9Campus building for sleeping
1DO4Type of fish or rowboat (“Finding Nemo” sequel)
1DO5Small round mark, noun/verb (… the i's and cross the t's)
1DR5Star Wars robot (R2D2, C3PO, BB–8), or last syllable of Google phone OS (An…)
1ID5Slang phrase particular to a language (“raining cats & dogs”), noun
1ID5Stupid person (village …)
1MI6Looking glass (“Who’s the fairest of them all?”)
1MO5Mother, familiar
2MO4,5Emotional state (happy, angry, sad, etc.)
1MO4Othello (“The …”), noun; or to tie up a boat, verb
1MO4Irrelevant, in law (it’s a … point)
1MO5Device (electric or gasoline) that produces movement (in a car, e.g.)
1MO5Short phrase encapsulating beliefs of an institution (Marines’ “Semper Fi”)
1OD6Opposite of even (math); unusual
1OD4Bad smell (body …)
1OM4Leave out, verb
1RI4Civil unrest, noun; or to rampage, verb
1RO4Large crucifix above altar, anagram of bldg. entrance
2RO4,5Chamber of a house (kitchen, bed-…, bath-…), noun/verb
1RO4Plant anchor that sucks up water
1RO4Indian flatbread that isn’t naan
1RO5Device or blade that spins
1TO5“Hot” sweetened, spiced alcoholic drink
1TO8Absolute nonsense (dated)
1TO6New Zealand small bird (Magnum, P.I star 1st name + breast, slang)
1TO4Short horn sound; noun/verb
1TO5Shinto shrine gate, NOT double plural of donut shapes
1TO4Bull, Spanish
2TO6,9Burning hot (climate or affair), adj.
1TO4Legal wrong, NOT pastry
2TO4,6Donut shape
1TR4Step on; snake flag motto "Don't … on me"
1TR4Musical group of 3 (Kingston …)
1TR4Fast walking pace for horses or people
1TR4Helen of “The Iliad” home, or oz. for gold & gems
1TY4Newbie, from Latin “recruit”

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