Bee Roots for 2023-09-24

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: M/AGINRT
  • Words: 79
  • Points: 506
  • Pangrams: 5
Source: Windward Islands Yachting Company

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, ...)
1AI6Point at a target
1AI6Flying ♂, compound
2AN7,11Word made by re-arranging the letters of another word, noun/verb
1AN5Jungian term for inner ♀ part of ♂
1AN9Bring to life (cartoons), verb; or living, adj.
1AR6What connects your hand to your shoulder, noun; or give weapons to someone, verb/noun
1GA6Competitive form of play (poker, soccer, Scrabble, etc.)
1GA5Archaic word for a ♂ street urchin, from French
1GA5Γ, γ (3rd Greek letter), & shortest-length EM radiation (… rays)
1GR4Metric mass unit, equal to the mass of one cc of water
2GR7,10System of structure rules for a language
1GR6Your parent's Mom (informal)
1GR4Forbidding, uninviting, humorless, depressing
1IM7Picture or other representation of a person or thing (mirror … is that thing reversed), or public perception of a celebrity or company (polish their…), noun/verb
1IM9Form a mental picture or concept; or John Lennon's 1971 album and title song
1IM4Prayer leader at mosque
1IM9Copy someone’s speech or mannerisms
2IM9,11Come to live permanently in a foreign country - gerund and noun forms are pangrams
1IN10Extremely close & personal (… apparel)
1MA4The 3 biblical wise ♂, Latin plural
1MA5Hot fluid below Earth’s crust; lava before it’s erupted
2MA4,7Permanently injure
1MA4Primary (Street), adj.
2MA8,11Keep up (appearances), or support; verb
2MA4,5♀ parent, slang
1MA7Adult ♂
1MA8Administer (she got promoted to …ment)
1MA5Japanese graphic novels
1MA5Craze, noun (Beatle-…)
1MA5Exodus food from the sky
1MA5Ray (fish)
1MA6Repeated yoga word, or slogan
1MA7Synonym for disfigure
1MA9Cocktail made with tequila and citrus fruit juice, often served with salt around the rim of the glass
2MA6,9Edge or border, noun/verb
1MA6Place to tie up boats
1MA8Tomato pasta sauce
1MA10Soak food in liquid before cooking - gerund form is a pangram
1MA4Old-timey schoolteacher honorific
1MA4Store (K–, Wal–)
1MA7Someone from the red planet (Marvin, e.g.)
1MA6Rat Pack singer Dean (Dino); or a swift-flying insectivorous songbird of the swallow family
1MA7007’s “shaken not stirred” drink
1MA7Tangle something, especially hair, in a thick mass, verb (the present tense is too short to be a Bee word)
1MA6Fellow member (cast-…) or joint occupant (room-…)
2MI7,9Move from place to place as seasons change - gerund and noun forms are pangrams
1MI6Silent performer
1MI6Where you dig for ore, or anti-ship bomb
1MI4Smaller version (as in Cooper car), slang abbr.
1MI51/60 dram, UK music ½ note, or calligraphy short vertical stroke
1MI6Smallest amount (the … bet at this table is $100)
2MI4,7Breath candy or its flavor or plant source, noun; or create coins, verb
1MI6Stretch of swampy ground, noun; or cause to be stuck in mud, verb; or figuratively, involve someone in a difficult situation that's hard to get out of, verb/noun
1MI5Sweet Japanese cooking wine made from fermented rice
1MI10Lessen the gravity of an offense (…-ing circumstances), verb
1MI4Catcher’s glove, or Sen. Romney
1NA6What you’re called (Kevin or Susan, e.g.)
1RA7Male sheep, noun; or roughly force something into place, verb/noun; or crash into something (the way male sheep fight)
1RI7The edge of a bowl or crater, noun; or act as an outer edge for something, verb
1TA6Japanese rich, naturally fermented soy sauce
1TA7Small forest-dwelling South American monkey of the marmoset family, typically brightly colored and with tufts and crests of hair around the face and neck
1TA6Not wild, adj./verb
1TA7Chinese geometric puzzle consisting of a square cut into seven pieces
1TA6Japanese & dojo floor mats (畳)
1TI6What clocks measure & display
1TR4People mover in Disney parks, parking lots, & cities
1TR7Three consecutive words (can also apply to letters or syllables), used in linguistic analysis
2TR4,8Neaten (hair) by snipping off ends
1TR83-hulled sailboat (“feline” 2-hulled ones are more common)

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