Bee Roots for 2023-09-03

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: A/HLMNOR
  • Words: 46
  • Points: 163
  • 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, ...)
1AL5Warning (bell)
1AL5Hawaiian greeting
1AM4A supply of bullets, slang abbreviation
1AM6Principled, ethical, adjective; or the lesson of a story, noun
1AN5Yearly record book
1AN4Soon, poetically
1AN4Opening at the end of the alimentary canal through which solid waste matter leaves the body, adj. form also means uptight
1AR5Protective covering against weapons (suit of …)
1AR5Pleasant smell (baking bread, e.g.)
1HA5Kosher in Islam
1HA4Corridor, or Let’s Make a Deal’s Monty
1HA4Nimbus (ring of light or glowing cloud) atop a saint, or Xbox shooter game
1HA5Forbidden by Islamic law
1HA4Physical injury, especially if deliberately inflicted, noun/verb
1HO4Crystallized frost
1HO6US Marine cheer word, each syllable pronounced separately
1HO4Jewish circle dance (“The …”)
1HO5Relating to an hour or hours/hourly
1HO8Regulatory chemical in your body - what makes teenagers seem crazy
1LA4Tibetan Buddhist monk (Dalai …)
1LL5S Am camel
1LL5South American grassy plain
1LO4Fertile, sandy soil
1LO4Borrowed $, noun/verb
1MA4Shopping center with many stores under one roof
2MA4,5♀ parent, slang
1MA6Vertebrate class that has hair, milk, & live birth
1MA6Wealth that’s an evil influence, per the New Testament & Milton
1MA5Exodus food from the sky
1MA5Large country house with lands (Batman’s “Stately Wayne…”)
1MA4Old-timey schoolteacher honorific
1MA6Dark red (Adam Levine’s “… 5” band), noun; or strand on an island, verb
1MO5♀ parent, slang
1MO4Sound of pain or sexual pleasure (Harry Potter’s ghost “…-ing Myrtle”)
1MO5Grinding back tooth
2MO5,6$, slang (from Fiji)
1MO5Principled, ethical, adjective; or the lesson of a story, noun
1NA4Indiaan flaat breaad
1NA4Grandma, slang; or Peter Pan dog
1NO6Standard (noun), or former SNL Weekend Update comic Macdonald
1OR4Spoken (… exam), or by mouth (… surgery), adjective
1RO4Wander, or use your phone on another network
1RO4Horse with 2–colored coat
1RO4Lion “shout”

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