Bee Roots for 2024-05-14

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: D/EFHIMU
  • Words: 39
  • Points: 195
  • Pangrams: 2

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, ...)
2DE4,6Property ownership paper, noun; or to transfer ownership, verb
2DE4,6Consider (I … it a great success)
1DE6Openly resist or refuse to obey
1DE7Treat someone or something as a god
1DE12Air with moisture (a hot and … summer day)
1DI4Cease to live
1DI6Faintly lit, adjective/verb
1DI4Coin worth 10 cents
1DU4Slang for “guy” (Aerosmith “… Looks Like a Lady”), noun; dress up elaborately, verb
1DU4Beer brand in “The Simpsons,” or actress Hilary of “A Cinderella Story”)
1DU6Soft-nosed bullet that expands on impact, lollipop brand with a doubled name, or slang for stupid person
1DU7Model or replica of a human being, noun; or create a mock-up, verb
1ED6Water swirl, NOT clothier Bauer
1ED7Instruct or improve someone, morally or intellectually
1FE4Give a meal to
2FE4,6Prolonged bitter quarrel, or “Family …” game show
1FI5Small flute used with a drum in military bands, noun/verb
1FU5Gas, smoke, or vapor that is bad smelling and/or dangerous, noun; or show anger, verb
2HE4,6Pay attention to (you didn’t … my advice)
1HE6Turn under and sew the edge of a garment, verb/noun
1HI4Stay out of sight (play “… & seek”), verb; or animal skin, noun
1HI4Go quickly (archaic)
1HU4Color or shade
1HU6Fit of petty annoyance
1HU6Make a low, steady continuous sound like that of a bee
2HU5,10Air with moisture (a hot and … summer day)
1ME6Between small and large, or a way of sending a message (McLuhan's The … is the Message)
1ME5Viral internet funny image, noun/verb
1MI4Computer music protocol, calf-length skirt, or noon in French
1MI6Annoy slightly, verb (it’s usually an –ED adj.)
1MI5Silent performer
1MU7Wet dirt
1MU6Fur tube to keep your hands warm
1MU9Egyptian preserved corpse

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