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The Worst Book Typos Of All Time

  First Posted: 09/28/11 03:58 PM ET   Updated: 09/29/11 01:37 PM ET

As non sequitur veteran Demitri Martin cheekily writes in “This Is A Book,” “a typo can charge the meaning of everything.”

Susan Andersen realized the truth in this statement earlier this month, when a single misplaced consonant in her new book turned a bedroom scene into bathroom humor.

Typos are far from uncommon, especially with the growing ubiquitousness of independent publishers and self-published e-books. Every day we encounter books, blogs and billboards guilty of to/too confusion or unnecessary quotation marks. Even literary greats have their grammatical guffaws: Fitzgerald lacked spelling skills, Tolstoy omitted necessary words and De Cervantes’ work was sometimes without subject-verb agreement.

As a New York Times column points out, some readers regard errors as beauty marks, “[finding] humanity in orthographic quirks.”

An optimistic outlook, to be sure, but some mistakes are too comical or offensive to admire. Here are a few examples of the worst and most laughable typos of all time:

"The Pasta Bible" by Silvio Rizzi and Tan Lee Leng
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A recipe calls for "freshly ground black people," rather than "freshly ground black pepper."
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Front page image: photo illustration based on Flickr photo by Katerha

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Filed by Madeleine Crum  |