Bee Roots for 2023-09-06

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/DEFHNO
  • Words: 34
  • 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, ...)
1AD5Join something to something else
2AD6,7Math term for a number which is summed with another (the “1” or “2” in 1 + 2 = 3)
1AE4Geologic time period, spelled with an æsc; “… Flux” anime
1AH5Further forward in space or time; in the lead (sports)
1AN5Negative end of a battery
1AN4Soon, poetically
3DE4,6,8Not alive
2DE8,10Remove spent flowers from a plant, verb/noun (compound)
3DE4,6,8Unable to hear
1DE4College administrator, or actor James of “Rebel Without a Cause”
1DO6Thingamajig, slang; ends in “father” nickname
1EN6A group of 9, from Greek (such as the 9 Egyptian deities “The Great …”)
2FA4,5Gradually become faint
1FA6Device, manual or electrical, that moves air for cooling or drying, noun/verb; enthusiastic supporter of a sports team
2HA4,6What sticks out of your sleeve
1HA7Passing of the baton (lit. or fig.), compound, made from body part with fingers + opposite of on
2HE4,6Body part that holds your brain, eyes, ears, nose and mouth
2HE5,7Hair or temp. tattoo dye
1NA4Indiaan flaat breaad
1NA4Nothing, Spanish
1NA4Grandma, slang; or Peter Pan dog
1OD4Greek or Roman building used for musical performances (smaller than theaters)
2OF7,9Without thought (I can’t think of the answer …), compound, made from opposite of on + body part with fingers; -ED form is a pangram

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