Bee Roots for 2023-07-24

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: N/ABIORW
  • Words: 40
  • Points: 150
  • Pangrams: 1
Source: Rich Reid/National Geographic

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, ...)
1AN4Soon, poetically
1AN5Atom or molecule with a net electric charge
1BA6Large monkey with red butt
1BA6Common yellow plantain variety
1BA9An uncivilized or primitive person
1BA4Large farm bldg. for storage & livestock
1BA5Noble rank; Snoopy has aerial dogfights with the “Red …”
1BO6Sewing machine thread holder
1BO6Candy, or 2X “good" in French
1BO6Small ape related to chimps
1BO4Favor, poetic (grant me a …), noun
1BO4Existing as a result of birth, adj. (Biden was … in Scranton)
1BO5Element 5
1BR5What you think with (or, in the case of some men, what you should think with)
1BR4Grain husk (Raisin … cereal)
1BR5Physical strength, usually in contrast with intelligence
1BR5Color of nuts or dark wood
1IN6Existing as a result of birth, adj. (Biden was … in Scranton)
1IR4Element Fe (atomic number 26), or hot clothes presser, noun/verb
1NA4Indiaan flaat breaad
1NA5Conspicuously rich person, as in VP Agnew’s “nattering …s of negativism”
1NA4Grandma, slang; or Peter Pan dog
1NA6Opposite of wide
1NO4“Black” in French; or dark mystery genre (film …)
1NO4Beginner, gamer slang
1NO412:00, midday, 🕛
1NO4Edible seaweed, eaten either fresh or dried in sheets
1ON5Veg that makes you cry when cut (for some, this is the "dreaded root veg")
1RA4Liquid precipitation
1RA7Colorful arc in the sky, compound pangram
1RA4Hindu queen, anagram of liquid precipitation
1RI6Long, narrow strip of fabric
1RO4Horse with 2–colored coat
1RO5Worm-hunting bird with a red breast
1RO5Mountain ash with scarlet berries
1WA5“Would like to do,” slang contraction
1WA4Alert someone to impending danger
1WI6Separate chaff from grain, or narrow down to the best (… out)
1WI4Someone who overuses fermented grape juice, slang
1WO4What you do with clothes, verb; or the result of a lot of that, noun (… and tear)

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