Bee Roots for 2023-04-09

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/CIMRTU
  • Words: 45
  • Points: 187
  • 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, ...)
1AC6African or Australian wattle tree
1AC4Trendy smoothie berry
1AR6North Pole adj. (… Circle or Ocean)
1AR4Opera solo
1AR4Plant genus with → shaped leaves, often called … lilies
2AT5,6Large open-air or skylight covered space surrounded by a building, common in ancient Roman houses; an upper cavity of the heart
1AT5Flower oil for perfume
1AT5Unfinished room below roof; garret
1AT7Entice, lure, or evoke (… attention; opposites …), verb
1AU4Supernatural glow encircling a person
1CA5Succulent plant with a thick stem that usually has spines, lacks leaves, and occasionally has brilliantly colored flowers
1CA4♀ sleeveless undergarment top, slang abbr.
1CA5Unit of weight for gems, NOT bunny food
1CA4Shopping trolley you push
1CA8Eye cloudiness, or waterfall
1CI5“Around” when used before a year, Latin
1CR4Study intensely just before a test (stuff facts into your brain), or stuff into a box; verb
1IM4Prayer leader at mosque
1MA4Permanently injure
2MA4,5♀ parent, slang
1MA6Rattle shaken in music
1MA4Old-timey schoolteacher honorific
1MA4Store (K–, Wal–)
1MI4Flaky rock that breaks off in sheets
1RA5Indian yogurt veg dip
1RA7Machine gun sound
1TA5Understood without being stated (… agreement), adj.
1TA4Diplomacy, sensitivity
1TA6Action planned to achieve a specific end (negotiating …)
1TA6Japanese rich, naturally fermented soy sauce
1TA6Airport runway area
1TA4Open filled pastry, noun; or sharp taste, adj.
1TA6Fish sauce, or tooth buildup
1TA6Japanese & dojo floor mats (畳)
1TA4Not slack, as a rope, adj.
1TI5Jeweled, ornamental ½ crown
1TR5Large land area, or body passage (“digestive …”)
1TR5Characteristic, often genetically determined (left-handedness, e.g.)
1TR4People mover in Disney parks, parking lots, & cities
1TR7Single unit of a public transit vehicle, compound noun
2TR6,9Deeply disturbing experience, or physical injury
1UM5Savory taste, noun, from Japanese

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