Bee Roots for 2023-10-19

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: G/EINTUY
  • Words: 39
  • Points: 249
  • 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, ...)
2EG4,6What baby birds hatch from
1EN6Car motor
2EY5,6Organ of vision
1GE4DNA sequence that determines traits, or singing cowboy Autry
1GE5Lives in a lamp, grants wishes
1GE5Someone who is exceptionally intelligent or creative
1GE4♂ counterpart to “lady,” slang abbr.
1GI7Live performance by or engagement for a musician or group, especially playing pop or jazz; noun/verb
1GI5Lively Renaissance or Baroque folk dance (French); starts with term for a temp job (… economy) & ends with the 2 silent final letters in 1 of those eras
1GI7Clear alcoholic spirit flavored with juniper berries; or card game
1GU7Lethal weapon that shoots bullets; slang term for someone who uses it (hired …), noun/verb
1GU7Stomach or belly, noun; or take out the intestines of a fish before cooking, verb
2IG6,8Catch fire, or cause to do so
1IN7Naive young ♀ in a play or film (French)
1IN9The quality of being clever, original, and inventive, pangram
1IN6A baseball game is divided into 9 of these
1IN9TurboTax company, or know by feeling rather than evidence
1NE7Open-meshed fabric twisted, knotted, or woven together at regular intervals, noun/verb
1NU6Small breaded chicken serving, or gold ore chunk
1TE6Short stick that holds up a golf ball, noun/verb
1TE7Shelter you sleep in while camping
3TI5,7,8Color slightly (…ed with pink), verb/noun
1TI7Shade of color, noun; or darken car windows, verb
1TU7Pull hard, verb; or a boat that pushes ships around a harbor
1TU6Sync the pitch of instruments before concerts
1TU7Make an exclamation expressing disapproval or annoyance
1TY5Fasten with string or cord, verb/noun
1UN7Fasten with string or cord, verb/noun
1UN8Sync the pitch of instruments before concerts
1UN7A salve, noun
1UN7Bring together
1YE7Basic monetary unit of Japan, noun; or longing; noun/verb

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