Bee Roots for 2023-03-03

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: V/ACEINT
  • Words: 44
  • Points: 266
  • Pangrams: 3

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, ...)
2AC6,8Doing things energetically or frequently; opposite of inert
1AT9State of listening carefully
1AV5Bird-related adj. (… Flu, e.g.)
1AV6Pilot or fly in a plane, verb (from Latin for bird)
1CA4Spanish sparkling wine, or vein to heart (vena …)
1CA4Large underground chamber, where stalactites and stalagmites form and bats live, noun; or give in (slang)
1CA6Warning; … emptor is Latin for “buyer beware,” noun
1CI5Asian & African “cat” used for perfume
1CI5Popular Honda model; or municipal (adj.)
1EA4Roof overhang, NOT Adam’s mate
1EV4Number that can be divided by 2 without a remainder, or flat & smooth; adj.; or to make or become that (… out the edges)
1EV5Thing that happens (“When in the course of human …s”)
2EV5,7Kick out of an apartment
1EV6Formal verb: reveal the presence of (a quality or feeling) (his words … his excitement)
2IN8,10Doing things energetically or frequently; opposite of inert
1IN11State of listening carefully
1IN9Something that motivates you (there’s no … to conserve water)
1IN10Cause to begin, or admit into a secret society; verb; or novice, noun
1IN9Abusive language used to express blame or to hurt (a stream of …)
2IN6,9Create something new (device, e.g.)
2IN6,7Ask someone to a party
2NA5,7Showing a lack of experience, wisdom, or judgment
1NA6Associated with the place or circumstances of a person's birth
1NA4Central part of a church building
1TE9Not certain or fixed; provisional; or hesitant
1TI8Spiff up (clothing or appearance), obscure verb
1VA6Opposite of occupied
1VA6Leave a place that was previously occupied (… the premises immediately!), or legal term for cancel (contract, judgment, or charge); verb
2VA7,9Injection given to provide immunity against a disease
1VA4Conceited (Carly Simon “You’re So …”)
1VA4Device that shows wind direction
1VE4Tube that returns blood to the heart
1VE4Exhaust outlet (clothes dryer, e.g.), noun; or let out your frustrations, verb
1VI4Bad habit, or “Miami …” police show
1VI4Climbing plant (Marvin Gaye “I Heard It Through The Grape…”)
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)
1VI6Music played in a lively and brisk manner

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