Bee Roots for 2023-06-13

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: M/ABINOT
  • Words: 56
  • Points: 270
  • Pangrams: 2
Source: Wikimedia Commons

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, ...)
1AB11Detest or loathe, verb (better know in its -tion form)
1AM5Scope, obscure noun (Netflix chess film “The Queen’s G…”)
1AM8Strong desire to achieve success
1AM5Protein building block acid, or a NH₂ group, noun
1AM4A supply of bullets, slang abbreviation
1AM7Smelly cleaning fluid, NH₃
1AM5Slang abbr. for a prenatal test that takes fluid from a uterus with a needle, noun
1AN5Jungian term for inner ♀ part of ♂
1AN9Bring to life (cartoons), verb; or living, adj.
1AT4Basic unit of matter, “… Ant” superhero, noun/adjective (… bomb)
1BA7Italian for baby or young child; one of Babe Ruth's many nicknames
1BA6Panda’s primary food
1BA6Small chicken breed or boxing weight class
1BO7Person who operates a small ship (compound)
1BO4It explodes, noun/verb
1BO4Sound of explosion or subwoofer
1BO6Underside, or slang for ass
2IA4,5Poetic metrical foot (…ic pentameter)
1IM4Prayer leader at mosque
1IM9Copy someone’s speech or mannerisms
1IN10Extremely close & personal (… apparel)
1MA4Permanently injure
1MA4Primary (Street), adj.
1MA8Keep up (appearances), or support; verb
2MA4,5♀ parent, slang
1MA5Venomous African green or black snake
1MA5Cuban dance, NOT an African snake
1MA6Wealth that’s an evil influence, per the New Testament & Milton
1MA5Craze, noun (Beatle-…)
1MA5Exodus food from the sky
1MA5Ray (fish)
1MI4Smaller version (as in Cooper car), slang abbr.
1MI51/60 dram, UK music ½ note, or calligraphy short vertical stroke
1MI6Smallest amount (the … bet at this table is $100)
1MI6Underling, as seen in “Despicable Me”
1MI4Breath candy or its flavor or plant source, noun; or create coins, verb
1MI4Catcher’s glove, or Sen. Romney
1MO5♀ parent, slang
1MO9Craze, noun (Beatle-…)
1MO4Sound of pain or sexual pleasure (Harry Potter’s ghost “…-ing Myrtle”)
1MO4Water ditch surrounding a castle
1MO41–channel sound abbreviation, or glandular fever “kissing disease” abbreviation
1MO4NASA Apollo missions landed on or circled it
1MO4Irrelevant, in law (it’s a … point)
1MO6Action by which things change position, or parliamentary proposal; noun
1MO5Short phrase encapsulating beliefs of an institution (Marines’ “Semper Fi”)
1NI5Large gray rain cloud
1NO10Propose a candidate for election or an honor
1OM4Leave out, verb
1OT7Turkish Empire; or low, upholstered seat or footstool without a back or arms
1TA6Japanese & dojo floor mats (畳)
1TO6Ketchup & ragù fruit
1TO4Burial vault (Who’s in Grant’s …?)
1TO6New Zealand small bird (Magnum, P.I star 1st name + breast, slang)

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