In the following sentence I do understand the reason the perfect is used for veni:

rure meo possum quidvis perferre patique; ad mare cum veni, generosum et lene requiro ("In my country estate I can stand and endure anything, but when I go to the seaside, I require luxurious and easy going circumstances.") Horace, Epistles

Here requiro is in the present, so I would have expected venio to be in the present (or maybe even an infinitive or gerund), as well. My only guess is that because the ad mare clause has the idea of not just going once, but whenever that happens, then the perfect is used instead for some reason.

  • Venio would refer to the process of travelling, or perhaps the final part of it. By contrast, venisse ad locum = adesse in loco. Commented May 17 at 16:17

1 Answer 1


The perfect tense sometimes has the point of view of the present, describing the effect of a completed past action on the present. There are many possible ways to phrase an English translation:

  • "When I have come to the seaside, I require..."

  • "Having come to the seaside, I require..."

  • "When I am at the seaside, I require..."

  • "At the seaside I require..."

A translation adhering to a poetic metre might require even more liberal wordings.

If the focus were on repetition, the tense would be imperfect rather than perfect. The perfect tense here does not imply repetition or a sense of "whenever", but a time order between arriving and requiring.

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