Suppose that I have a book that has given me a lot of good hints but now I feel that I have exhausted the book and used up all it can give. Is there a Latin verb that I could use to express this?

The basic verb for using is uti, and it would sound most natural to me to go with peruti, exuti, or deuti. But the first two don't seem to exist and the last one refers to abuse rather than complete use. Another good using verb that comes to mind is adhibere, but prefixed verbs rarely get a second prefix and indeed there seems to be no peradhibere. There is perhibere, but it means something else.

What would be an idiomatic way to go? All I could think of is haurire, possibly with a prefix, but I'm far from convinced that it would make an appropriate choice.

  • 1
    Remember our movie clip from Mel-Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ": latin.stackexchange.com/q/4297/1982? When the Centurion decided that Jesus had had enough flagellation from the cat-o'-nine-tails: "satis!" = "Enough!". Also, "sed haec hactenus" = "enough of this" (Oxford). I know, you asked for a verb: "satior" [1] = "to have one's fill of" (+ ablative case). Attestations: Glosbe: "Uses of Satior".
    – tony
    Commented Sep 28, 2020 at 12:04
  • llmavirta: Curious about the entry (Oxford) I lookked it up: Cic. de fato 20: "sed haec hactenus: alia videamus" = "Enough of these matters (lit. "to this point and no further"): let us consider others.", where "haec" must be a neuter plural.
    – tony
    Commented Sep 28, 2020 at 13:50

2 Answers 2


My first thought was exhaurire and indeed in his Epistulae Seneca writes to Lucilius:

Librum tuum quem mihi promiseras accepi. [...] exhausi totum.

I've received your book you had promised me. [...] I've exhausted it all.

  • Thanks! This is an excellent fit.
    – Joonas Ilmavirta
    Commented Sep 28, 2020 at 13:25
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    For those who are curious, it's letter 46. The problem I see with exhaurire is that, in the letter, there's no sense that Seneca has 'used up all it can give.' In fact, in the last paragraph he says, De libro plura scribam cum illum retractavero, 'I'll write more about the book when I've gone back through it.' I think Seneca is really using exhaurire more or less as a synonym for perlegere, which he also uses in the letter.
    – cnread
    Commented Sep 28, 2020 at 17:01
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    @cnread: Yes, you make a good point. At the same time, he starts the letter saying he wanted to just have a taste of the book, but - on the contrary - then happened to really love it and "exhausted" it. I think this can be seen as "complete use", whereas the "going back through it" can be seen as a "reuse". However, I too would like to see an expression somewhat stronger than this. Commented Sep 28, 2020 at 17:29

To indicate you have “used up” something, you might use consumere or its lesser known sibling absumere. This even fits when you have not “consumed” (in the English sense) the thing. For example, if in battle you have used up all your missiles, you can say: omnia tela consumpta sunt (Caesar, De Bello Civili 1,46).

The idea that you “use up” a book seems strange even in English. I would rather say: “I've drawn all use out of it that I could” or something to that effect, which can be reproduced in Latin with utilitas for fructus, e.g.: Omnem fructum quem potui percepi ex hoc libro.

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