5 Worst Typos of History

In an older video of John Green’s, he discusses Neil Gaiman’s law and the five worst typos he’s managed to uncover.

John, exhilerated upon finding one of the very first printed copies of The Fault in Our Stars in the mail, becomes a bit disgruntled when he finds a typo in the Author’s Note. He quotes Neil Gaiman, saying, “If an author opens a book he or she wrote, he or she will inevitably come across a typo.”

“It’s probably the only typo in the entire book,” he says, “but I found it.”

#5: The Pasta Bible by Jeni Wright

Though it appears to be a totally normal book about pasta, it contains one error so drastically horrific that its publisher tried to have every copy destroyed. In a particular recipe, it called for “salt and ground black… people. They meant pepper, but they… they wrote people…”

#4: The entire name ‘Imogen’

‘Imogen’ was probably a transcription error in Shakespeare’s Cymbeline, where he had probably meant to write ‘Innogen’ (which was a name at the time), but the n’s got too close together, thus eventually resulting in the music group Imogen Heap, whose entire band is based on a typo.

#3: John’s favorite newspaper typo

The Washington Post once published a newspaper that headlined with “FDR: In Bed With CoEd.” They had meant to write ‘cold;’ nevertheless, FDR was so amused with this that he asked for a hundred copies over the paper which, unfortunately, had already been pulped.

#2: The United States Constitution

Article 1, Section 10.

“No state shall, without the consent of Congress, lay any imposts or duties on imports or exports expect what may be absolutely necessary for executing it’s inspection laws.”

John goes on with, “I mean seriously, Hank, the twenty-eighth amendment should have been ‘We acknowledge that earlier in this very constitution we messed up its and it’s and we are sorry.'”

#1: The Bible

In 1631, two printers were given the task of printing a new King James Bible.  They did a great job, except when they were printing the Seventh Commandment, they forgot a not. “So, their bible said, ‘Thou shalt commit adultury.'”

The 1716 version of the King James Bible contained a similar error, in which Jesus encourages an adulturous woman to “Go, and sin on more.” [It was supposed to be “Go, and sin no more.”]


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