Bad Teachings, Corrected

A reader named Al was taught the word "towards" is for physical direction while "toward" is for more abstract uses.

My friend Tracy was taught that the word "percent" must always follow a number, while "percentage" is for all other uses.

A user on a grammar message board wrote: "I was taught in 1974 that 'ly' never belonged on the words 'good' or 'bad.'"

A writer for the Guardian was taught that "'between' applies only to two things, and 'among' should be used for more than two."

I once met a woman who was taught that you should never begin a sentence with the word "it."

What's up with those? The facts are in this recent column.

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