Bee Roots for 2024-04-28

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: T/ACEILZ
  • Words: 59
  • Points: 279
  • 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, ...)
3AC6,6,7Vinegar adj., or acid it contains
1AL4Illumination, noun/verb (Let there be …)
1AT5Unfinished room below roof; garret
1AT5Move into a sloping position, or fight windmills (… at)
1CA5Succulent plant with a thick stem that usually has spines, lacks leaves, and occasionally has brilliantly colored flowers
1CA7Mineral that’s the principal component of marble; similar to milk nutrient mineral
1CA7Feline ♂ whistle; or jeer at passing ♀, compound
1CA7Domestic feline hind appendage; or a tall, reedlike marsh plant with a dark brown, velvety cylindrical head of numerous tiny flowers, compound
1CA6Cows & bulls (… prod)
1CI4Quote as evidence
1CL5Spike on sports shoes
1EC5Stylé, brilliancé, conspicuous succéss; Frénch for “splintér” or “sparklé”
1EC8Wide-ranging tastes, styles, or ideas; adj.
1EL5Make someone ecstatically happy, verb
2EL5,7Vote into office
1EL6Draw out a response, verb
1EL5Select group that’s superior
1IL7Not forbidden by law or custom
2IT6,9𝑆𝑙𝑎𝑛𝑡𝑒𝑑 𝑡𝑒𝑥𝑡 𝑓𝑟𝑜𝑚 𝑅𝑜𝑚𝑒’𝑠 𝑐𝑜𝑢𝑛𝑡𝑟𝑦, to make it so is a pangram
1LA7Produce milk, verb (breastfeed a baby)
1LA7Capillary that absorbs fat in the small intestine
1LA6Milk adj. (think acid in yogurt or sore muscles)
1LA4Running behind (I’m … for class), or deceased (The … Charles Grodin)
1LA5Coffee with espresso & steamed milk
1LA7Structure such as a pie top crust with strips of dough, e.g.
1LI5Not forbidden by law or custom
1LI4Singsong accent
1LI4Low-calorie or low-fat in ad-speak (Miller … beer)
1LI6Small (Stuart or Chicken …), adj.
1TA5Musical direction meaning “silent”
1TA5Understood without being stated (… agreement), adj.
1TA4Diplomacy, sensitivity
2TA6,8Action planned to achieve a specific end (negotiating …)
1TA7Perceptible by touch, adj.
1TA4Dogs wag this hind appendage
1TA4Mineral in baby powder
1TA4Story (fairy…), NOT what dogs wag; noun
1TA4Of greater than average height, adj.
1TA6Fringed prayer shawl
1TA4Ankle bone
1TA6Rat out your sibling to your parents
1TA10Someone who rats out a sibling, compound
1TE4Blue-green color, or a duck with a stripe of that color
1TE4Inform, verb; or Swiss archer William with an overture
1TE8Revealing, compound adj.; or indication, compound noun (Poe’s “The … Heart”)
1TI4Thin ceramic wall, counter, flooring, or roofing square
1TI4Cash register or drawer, noun; “up to,” preposition; or prep soil for planting, verb
1TI4Move into a sloping position, or fight windmills (… at)
1TI9Stimulate or excite, especially in a sexual way
1TI5Name of a book, movie, or job, noun/verb; or a document showing you own a car or house
1TI6Dot above an i or j, or really small amount
1ZE4Sixth letter of the Greek alphabet
1ZI4Tubular pasta

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