Bee Roots for 2023-10-14

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/ABCEIN
  • Words: 58
  • Points: 252
  • Pangrams: 2
Source: Wikipedia

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, ...)
1AC4Peak; or where Wile E. Coyote orders his supplies
2AM8,8The character and atmosphere of a place (both spellings are pangrams)
1AM4Prayer-ending word
3AM5,6,6Single-celled organism that can change its shape (also its spelling)
2AN6,6Fatigue due to red blood cell shortage
1AN5Jungian term for inner ♀ part of ♂
1AN5Japanese cartoon
1BE4Ray of light (sun…), noun; or Star Trek transport method (“… me up, Scotty”), verb
1BE6Turn into; or begin to be; or qualify as (She hopes to … a doctor)
1CA6Alligator with name similar to British Caribbean islands (George Town) (alt spelling is the same)
1CA4♀ sleeveless undergarment top, slang abbr.
1CA4Travel toward a particular place, tell your dog to move toward you, or slang for “to orgasm”
1CI6Place they show movies
1EM5Master of Ceremonies (sounded-out initials), slang noun/verb
1EM8Renowned (scholar); used with “domain” to mean gov property grab
1EN5Rectal wash (Fleet, e.g.)
3IA4,5,6Poetic metrical foot (…ic pentameter)
2IC6,6♂ who delivers frozen water, one “Cometh” in O’Neill play, "Top Gun" pilot
1IM4Prayer leader at mosque
1IM6Drink (alcohol) (formal)
1IM9About to happen (… demise, e.g.), adj.
1MA4Self-defense pepper spray, staff, or spice from a nutmeg
1MA4Permanently injure
1MA4Primary (Street), adj.
2MA4,5♀ parent, slang
1MA5Venomous African green or black snake
1MA4Hair on a horse or ♂ lion’s neck
3MA5,5,6Craze, noun (Beatle-…)
1MA5Exodus food from the sky
2ME4,6The average in math, noun; unkind, adj. (“… Girls”); or intend (I didn’t … to do it)
1ME5Holiest city in Islam, or place of attraction (shopping …)
1ME4Viral internet funny image, noun/verb
1ME6Threaten, verb; or person who causes harm (Dennis the …)
1MI4Flaky rock that breaks off in sheets
1MI43 blind rodents in rhyme
1MI4A person’s look or expression, NOT an average
1MI4Silent performer
1MI5Parrot someone’s speaking & mannerisms, verb; or the person doing it, noun
1MI5Chop finely
1MI4Where you dig for ore, or anti-ship bomb
1MI4Smaller version (as in Cooper car), slang abbr.
1MI7British term for a car that is used as a taxi but must be ordered in advance because it is not licensed to pick up passengers who hail it in the street (the word suggests "small taxi")
1MI7Small, handheld video-capturing device used by TV reporters
1MI51/60 dram, UK music ½ note, or calligraphy short vertical stroke
1MI6Smallest amount (the … bet at this table is $100)
1NA4What you’re called (Kevin or Susan, e.g.)
1NI5Large gray rain cloud

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