Bee Roots for 2023-07-01

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: I/BCELNV
  • Words: 39
  • Points: 170
  • Pangrams: 2

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, ...)
1BE7Straight, direct course between 2 points, compound (think this puzzle’s name)
1BE7accept something as true; feel sure of the truth of
1BE5Be in a horizontal resting position, or say something false
1BI5Holy book (starts with Genesis)
1BI4Liver secretion, or anger
1BI4Invoice, or actor Murray, noun/verb
2BL4,5Russian pancake
1CE5Yo-Yo Ma’s instrument (also Pablo Casals')
1CI5Popular Honda model; or municipal (adj.)
1CI5Non-military, or polite; adj.
1CL6Medical facility (health …)
1EN7Exist, verb; or not on tape (TV show), adj.
1EV4Wicked (ELO’s “… Woman”, Santana's "… Ways")
1EV6Formal verb: reveal the presence of (a quality or feeling) (his words … his excitement)
1IC6Frozen water spear formed from drips
1IN7Tend toward or feel favorably disposed toward, verb; or slope, noun
1IN5Concave belly button, slang
1IN10Can be defeated, adj., pangram; negative form, which is much more common, is also a pangram
1LE8Merciful, not strict (as a judge or parent, e.g.)
2LI5,7Printed slander, noun
1LI4Itchy hair parasites
1LI4Bank hold on a mortgaged property, NOT tilt
1LI4A queue, what you wait in for your turn
1LI5Cloth napkin fabric
2LI4,5Exist, verb; or not on tape (TV show), adj.
1NI6Small, tentative chew, verb; or a snack, noun
1NI4Pleasant in manner; or city in SE France
1NI5Your sibling’s daughter
1NI4Number of justices on Supreme Court
1VE4Bride’s face covering
1VE4Tube that returns blood to the heart
1VI4A person's emotional state or the atmosphere of a place as communicated to and felt by others
1VI4Bad habit, or “Miami …” police show
1VI4Despicable, NOT a small glass container; adj.
1VI8Can be defeated, adj., pangram; negative form, which is much more common, is also a pangram
1VI4Climbing plant (Marvin Gaye “I Heard It Through The Grape…”)

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