Bee Roots for 2024-05-24

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: I/ACEHMN
  • Words: 57
  • Points: 266
  • 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, ...)
1AC6African or Australian wattle tree
1AC4Trendy smoothie berry
2AN6,6Fatigue due to red blood cell shortage
1AN5Jungian term for inner ♀ part of ♂
1AN5Japanese cartoon
1CA6Alligator with name similar to, or same as, British Caribbean islands (George Town)
1CA4♀ sleeveless undergarment top, slang abbr.
1CA6Dog family, or pointy tooth
1CH4Spiced Indian tea (… latte)
1CH5String of metal links
1CH4Faddish “pet” mint plant
1CH5Girl, Spanish
1CH6Pretentious style (or almost 2x fashionable)
1CH5Percussion instrument or its sound (I find a tinkling wind … to be annoying), noun
1CH4Bottom of face, noun; or raise it above a bar in a pull-up, verb
1CH5Large Asian country, or ceramics from there
1CI5Easy task (it’s a …), noun; or tighten up (belt or saddle, e.g.), verb
1CI6Place they show movies
1EC9Dietary supplement from a coneflower daisy used to fight colds
1EM8Renowned (scholar); used with “domain” to mean gov property grab
1EN7String of metal links
1HA7Pacific yellowtail or amberjack, especially when used in sushi or sashimi
1HE6A person’s buttocks, slang
2IC6,6♂ who delivers frozen water, one “Cometh” in O’Neill play, "Top Gun" pilot, compound
1IM4Prayer leader at mosque
1IM9About to happen (… demise, e.g.), adj.
1IN5Stupid, silly, ridiculous (… questions or comments); adj.
1IN41/12 of a foot, noun; or move slowly, verb
1IN5Concave belly button, slang
1MA7Powered device (fax, sewing, answering, “Rage Against the…”), perfect pangram (gerund form is an imperfect pangram)
1MA8Hawaiian double name for the dolphinfish or dorado
1MA4Permanently injure
1MA4Primary (Street), adj.
3MA5,5,6Craze, noun (Beatle-…)
1ME6The average in math, noun; unkind, adj. (“… Girls”); or intend (I didn’t … to do it)
1ME8Person who fixes cars or devices, pangram
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.
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)
1NI6Vitamin B3
1NI4Pleasant in manner; or city in SE France
1NI5Specialized segment of the market
1NI5Your sibling’s daughter
1NI4Number of justices on Supreme Court

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