Bee Roots for 2023-09-10

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: B/ADGINO
  • Words: 52
  • Points: 294
  • 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, ...)
2AB7,10Leave behind (…ship! To the lifeboats!)
1AB7Accept or act in accordance with a decision or law; or tolerate something; or continue without fading (…ing love)
1AD5Filipino stew or Mexican seasoning
1BA6Sound a sheep makes, noun/verb
1BA4Rum sponge cake, or Ali & his 40 thieves
1BA6Large monkey with red butt
1BA7Emblem worn as a mark of office, membership, or employment, noun/verb
1BA7Container made of flexible material with an opening at the top, used for carrying things, noun/verb
1BA7Prohibit, verb
1BA6Common yellow plantain variety
2BA4,7Musical group, or loop (as in “wedding” & “arm”)
1BA9Strip of material used to protect a wound or injured part of the body
2BA7,8Mask or headscarf, 2 spellings
2BA4,7Sound of a collision, noun (“The Big … Theory”)
1BA6African tree
1BI7Offer to pay a price at an auction
1BI6Remain or stay somewhere, archaic verb (you must go and I must …)
1BI7Receptacle for storing a specified substance, noun/verb; trash can (British)
2BI4,7Fasten tightly, verb; problematic situation, noun
1BI5Decorative mark worn in the middle of the forehead
1BI7Overindulge (…-watch Netflix); verb/noun
1BI5Game with a number sheet, marker, and a number caller
1BO7Make a quick short movement up and down (… for apples); short haircut for women
1BO4Taiwan sweet tea with gelatin pearls
1BO6Sewing machine thread holder
1BO6Be an omen of a particular outcome
1BO7Wet muddy ground too soft to support something heavy; become stuck in such a place, verb (negotiations …ed down)
1BO5Sound of a spring or jack-in-the-box, noun
1BO6Candy, or 2X “good" in French
2BO4,7Agent 007, Brit spy James
1BO6Skeleton part, or what dogs chew & bury; study intensely
1BO4Water pipe for smoking weed, or sound of a large bell
1BO5Paired small drum held between the knees
1BO6Small ape related to chimps
1BO6Express disapproval at a game, verb; what ghosts say
1BO4Breast, slang
1BO6“Owie” you kiss & make better, mistake, or what 2 ghosts say
1BO4Favor, poetic (grant me a …), noun
1DA7Press lightly with a piece of absorbent material in order to clean or dry something, verb; or a small amount of something, noun (Brylcreem's "A little …'ll do ya!")
1GA7Talk at length, typically about trivial matters
1GI6Another small ape related to chimps, or “Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire” author; noun
1GI6Insulting or mocking remark, noun/verb
1NA7Take, grab, or steal something; catch someone doing something wrong
1NA5Conspicuously rich person, as in VP Agnew’s “nattering …s of negativism”
1NO10Fasten tightly, verb; problematic situation, noun
1NO4Beginner, gamer slang

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