Bee Roots for 2023-07-14

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/ABILOX
  • Words: 41
  • Points: 136
  • Pangrams: 1
Source: Discount School Supply

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, ...)
1AB6(Of a plant) produce flowers
1AM4A supply of bullets, slang abbreviation
1AX5Statement or proposition which is regarded as being established, accepted, or self-evidently true; a dictum or truism; noun
1BA4Soothing ointment (lip …)
1BA6Panda’s primary food
1BL4Exclamation used to represent a loud sharp sound, as of a gunshot or explosion
1BL5(Of a plant) produce flowers
1BO4It explodes, noun/verb
1BO4Sound of explosion or subwoofer
1BO7Loud portable cd player (informal, compound)
2IA4,5Poetic metrical foot (…ic pentameter)
1IM4Prayer leader at mosque
1LA4Tibetan Buddhist monk (Dalai …)
1LA4A young sheep; Mary had a little one
1LI4Peru capital, or bean
1LI4General term for an arm or leg, or large tree branch (go out on a…)
1LI5Uncertain waiting period (in …), a place for a soul not in either Heaven or Hell, or a dance where you bend backwards to pass under a bar
1LI4Chauffeured, stretched car, slang abbr.
1LL5S Am camel
1LO4Fertile, sandy soil
1LO4Cloth weaving device
1MA4Letters you get or send
1MA7Receptacle for letters you get or send, starts with above, compound pangram noun
1MA4Permanently injure
1MA4Shopping center with many stores under one roof
2MA4,5♀ parent, slang
1MA5Venomous African green or black snake
1MA5Cuban dance, NOT an African snake
1MA6Vertebrate class that has hair, milk, & live birth
1MA4A skirt, dress, or coat that reaches to the ankle
1MA7Medical term for jawbone
1MA5Short, pithy statement that expresses a general truth or rule of conduct
2MA6,7The largest value of some quantity
1MI4Wheat or pepper grinder
1MO5♀ parent, slang
1MO4To work hard (archaic); homophone of bris snipper
1MO4Mobster’s ♀
1MO5$, slang (from Fiji)

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