Bee Roots for 2023-07-07

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: W/ACGILN
  • Words: 29
  • Points: 164
  • 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, ...)
1AW5Feeling of reverential respect mixed with fear or wonder, noun/verb
1AW6Canvas overhang for shade or shelter from rain, noun
1CA6Sound a crow makes
2CL4,7Lobster’s pinching “hand,” or animal’s sharp fingernail (gerund form is a pangram)
2GN4,7Chew persistently, as a beaver on a log
1LA4Area of short, mown grass in a yard, garden, or park
1WA7What a happy dog does with its tail
1WA6Salary, noun; or carry on a war
1WA8Swing a golf club loosely to and fro over the ball before playing a shot
2WA4,7Loud, unhappy sound of babies & banshees, NOT a humpback
2WA4,7Barrier between rooms, or Pink Floyd album ("The …")
1WA6Decrease (esp. moon), NOT Batman alter ego Bruce
1WA8Slang for succeed in getting or doing something by persuading someone or by being smart in some way (how did he manage to … an invitation to that party?)
1WA5“Would like to do,” slang contraction
1WI7Head covering made of hair
1WI8Squirm (leave some … room for your toes in new shoes); what worms do
2WI6,10Send nautical signals by flapping pennants, verb, compound made from fake hair noun + dog tail motion verb
2WI4,7Last … & testament, or actor Ferrell
1WI7Be victorious in a game or battle
1WI7Slight grimace caused by pain
1WI6Fermented grape juice, (Merlot, e.g.), noun/verb
2WI4,7What birds, bats, & planes use to fly

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