Bee Roots for 2023-03-25

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/MORTWY
  • Words: 60
  • Points: 257
  • Pangrams: 1
Source: Pinterest

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, ...)
1AM7Relating to or expressing sexual love (literary term)
1AM4A supply of bullets, slang abbreviation
1AO5Main blood pipe from heart
2AR5,6Protective covering against weapons (suit of …)
1AR4Military land force, Navy football rival
1AR5Pleasant smell (baking bread, e.g.)
1AR5Ordered series, esp. math
1AR5What you shoot with a bow
1AR9West Indian plant that produces starch
1AR6Steep-sided gully in SW US; Spanish for creek
1AR4Creative activity: painting, music, literature, dance, etc
1AT4Basic unit of matter, “… Ant” superhero, noun/adjective (… bomb)
1AT5Flower oil for perfume
1AW4Elsewhere, or stored (put), adv.; or a sports team game not played at home, adj.
1AW4Not as expected (his plans went …), adj.
2MA4,5♀ parent, slang
1MA7Milk-producing gland
1MA4Old-timey schoolteacher honorific
1MA6Rodent with short legs and a thick body, often called groundhog or woodchuck
1MA6Soft stuff inside bones where red blood cells are made
1MA5Wed, verb
1MA4Store (K–, Wal–)
1MA6Person who’s killed for their beliefs
1MA4Hellman’s sandwich spread, slang abbr.
1MA5Top city elected official
1MO5♀ parent, slang
1MO4Water ditch surrounding a castle
1MO5Eel-like predatory fish that hides in crevices
1MO6Paste for bricks, cup for grinding (…& pestle), or gun for lobbing shells
1MO8British expressway, compound pangram
1OA4Grain that is Quaker's specialty
2OR6,7Make a speech
1RA5Sewer-dwelling rodent
1RA7Machine gun sound
1RO4Wander, or use your phone on another network
1RO4Lion “shout”
1RO6Phone with dial, adj., or int’l service org (… Club)
2RO7,8Move in a circle around an axis or center
1TA5Dark, thick, flammable liquid distilled from wood or coal
1TA4Asian veg that sounds like fortunetelling cards
1TA5Fortunetelling cards
1TA4Open filled pastry, noun; or sharp taste, adj.
1TA6Fish sauce, or tooth buildup
1TA6Skin “ink”
1TA5Worn & shabby, or of poor quality; Scottish
1TO6Ketchup & ragù fruit
1TR4People mover in Disney parks, parking lots, & cities
1TR7Rails for a british streetcar, compound
1TR4Use it to carry drinks
1WA4At a comfortably high temperature (not hot), noun/verb
2WA4,5Small, hard benign skin growth (on a witch’s chin?) (…-hog, plantar …)
1WA4Unit of electric power
1WO9Someone who is always anxious (slang, compound)
1YA6Old man's pepper (also Peter of Peter, Paul, and Mary)

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