Bee Roots for 2024-05-15

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: P/AFILNT
  • Words: 43
  • Points: 203
  • Pangrams: 2
Source: Wikipedia /Bjørn Christian Tørrissen

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, ...)
1AP5Bee-related adj.
1AP6Horrify (his tasteless jokes … me)
1FI6Gesture made by the sudden forcible straightening of a finger curled up against the thumb; homophone of the late Queen Elizabeth’s late husband Prince …
1FL4What Old Glory does in the breeze, or what birds do to their wings to take off; verb
1FL4Turn over pancakes to cook the bottoms, verb; or comedian … Wilson
1FL8Not serious or respectful, pangram
1IN5Appropriate or suitable in the circumstances; or likely to do something, adj. (negated adverb form is a pangram)
1PA4Bucket, NOT white-faced
1PA4Sensation from an injury, noun/verb
1PA5Latex or oil-based wall coating
1PA6Traditional Mexican shelter roofed with palm leaves or branches, esp. on a beach, noun
1PA7Roof of the mouth
1PA8Resembling a royal residence (Buckingham?); spacious & splendid, adj.
1PA4Figurative dark cloud, or funeral "bearer"
1PA4Arthropod antenna for touch & taste, or start of medical exam by touch term
1PA6Toasted Italian sandwich
1PA4What a dog does when it’s hot, verb; or singular of trousers, noun
1PA4Father, slang
1PA5Pontiff adj.
1PA7Small rounded bump on body part such as tongue (from Latin)
1PA6Green film from aging on copper, or sheen on wood from polishing
1PF4Sound of contempt or disbelief
1PI5Rice cooked in broth with spice & veg or meat
1PI4Tablet of medicine
1PI6Stuffed añimal with toys & cañdy that you hit with a stick
1PI416 fluid oz., or typical UK beer serving
1PI7Large duck named for its hind feathers; compound; think “… the … on the donkey” kid’s party game
1PI5Ground-dwelling bird that wags its tail & is named for its song
1PI6Fosse musical about Charlemagne’s son, or apple variety
1PI4Flat bread with a pocket, often dipped in hummus or filled with falafel
1PI7Rhyming, usually hyphenated, adv. for rapid beating (my heart went …)
1PI7Hidden or unsuspected danger
1PL5Ordinary, unadorned, NOT a 747; adj.
1PL6Legal term for an accusation, or literary noun for a grievance; usually starts with COM–
1PL9Person who brings a lawsuit, pangram
1PL5Hair braid, noun/verb
1PL4Detailed proposal (teacher’s lesson …), noun; or prepare in advance, verb
1PL5It has leaves, roots, & flowers (potted …), noun; or place a seed in the ground, verb
1PL8Banana variety
1PL4Construction map; omit end vowel in dish synonym
1PL6Flexible, often has COM– prefix; anagram of legal term for an accusation, adverb form is a pangram
1TA4Spanish bar snack (usually plural)
1TI7Common bland-tasting fish

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