18 October 2007

Booking Through Thursday: Typography

You may or may not have seen my post at Punctuality Rules Tuesday, about a book I recently bought that had the actual TITLE misspelled on the spine of the book. A glaring typographical error that really (really!) should have been caught. So, using that as a springboard, today’s question: What’s the worst typographical error you’ve ever found in (or on) a book?
I can’t, off the top of my head late at night, think of anything too horrible (certainly not a misspelt title!). I think most of the errors I’ve seen have been the mixing-up of homophones: ‘yolk’ and ‘yoke’, ‘allude’ and ‘elude’, ‘peak’ and ‘pique’, etc. They always annoy me, though, especially when there’s a lot of them in one book, because I always see them and wonder how anything so obvious got overlooked. Outside books, but still in the realm of published writing, a column in the Courier-Mail recently referred to a group of comedians ‘poking fun of’ the Opposition leader.

And then there’s the one I once saw in a Human Cell Biology lecture. A slide came up featuring a schematic of the digestive tract and something about the regulation of apatite. I spent several very confused moments trying to fathom why some poor person would have a white crystalline mineral in their stomach before I realised he meant the regulation of appetite. (Well, it was an 8 a.m. class!)


heather (errantdreams) said...

Now that I've posted my answer, of course, I just thought of another error that amused me---in one book I finished reading last night a character was "raking" his brain rather than "wracking." What a painful image!

Too many errors in one book does serve to pull me out of the story, because I'm noticing the writing rather than being buried in the events.

gautami tripathy said...

This meme post made me recall a lecture I attended last May. It was a seminar for Mathematics teachers and we were discussing common errors made by students.

A slide came up showing common mistakes made by students in Mensuration.

The thing was, instead on Mensuration, it was written Menstruation on the subject title.

Need I say more?

Annie the Superfast Reader said...

"peak" and "pique" are also on my pet peeve list.

Happy BTT!

pussreboots said...

Errors can lead to funny misunderstandings. Happy BTT.

Julia said...

allude and elude or peak and pique are one of those mix up I have seen....

Happy BTT! Hope you have a good weekend ahead :)

--Deb said...

My sister's favorite example? A "Golden Book" she'd gotten for my niece when she was little, about Poky the Puppy (or something like that). The first sentence of the book? It started "Oky the puppy...."

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Header image shows detail of A Young Girl Reading by Jean-Honoré Fragonard, c. 1776