Bee Roots for 2023-02-27

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: A/DKLRWY
  • Words: 37
  • Points: 149
  • 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, ...)
1AL5Put (fears) at rest
1AL4Friend (person, country) who joins you for a common purpose in a conflict
1AR5Ordered series, esp. math
1AW5Prize for merit, noun (Academy … for Best Picture)
1AW4Elsewhere, or stored (put), adv.; or a sports team game not played at home, adj.
2AW7,9Difficult or embarrassing (pause, position, questions), adj.; adverb form is a pangram
1AW4Not as expected (his plans went …), adj.
1DA5Papa (… long legs, sugar …)
1DA5Move slowly, or have casual sex with
2DA4,6Absence of light
1DR4Make a sketch, or pull a gun from its holster
2DR5,6Speak in a slow, lazy way with prolonged vowels (Southern …)
1DR4Cart with open sides
1DR5Mythical Greek tree nymph
1DR7Plasterboard for home interior dividers, compound
1DY4Something that consists of 2 parts, from Greek (Kylo Ren & Rey, e.g.)
1KA5Small canoe, usually used with a double-bladed paddle
1LA4♀ counterpart of gentleman ("… & the Tramp")
1LA4Pig fat for cooking
1LA4Small, ground-dwelling songbird (meadow…), or something done for fun (he entered the race on a …)
1LA7Put a deposit on something to buy later, compound
1RA5Nickname of Cpl. O’Reilly in M.A.S.H., or Doppler weather sensor acronym
1RA5Mass meeting of people for a common cause (pep, political)
1RA5Uncooked; or unrefined (… talent)
1WA4Travel on foot, verb/noun (… don't run)
1WA7Path for strolling, esp. raised one connecting bldgs., or wide garden one, compound
1WA4Barrier between rooms, or Pink Floyd album ("The …")
1WA4Actress Sela, or hospital dept. (burn, e.g.)
1WA6Hold up or ambush (to talk or rob), compound
2WA7,9Disobedient, capricious (Kansas “Carry On … Son”)
1YA43 feet (…stick), or grassy area outside a house
1YA42–masted sailboat, not Southern collective pronoun contraction

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