I took a look at the chat and saw many comments in Latin, most of whom I could not decipher immediately. So I tried to point that out, and why not do it in Latin.

The problem is that I have basically translated this phrase from German to Latin and then back to English, so all versions are a bit clumsy.

To read all that will take me a while - as has writing this.

Haec legere multis horis me diuturnum fuerit, etiam eae scribere erat

My ideas/thoughts:

  • using neuter plural (like Seneca used to)
  • differentiating between that (haec) and this (eae)
  • not messing up the tenses by trying future (fuerit) and imperfect (erat)
  • "take time" is difficult, pons gave diuturnum esse and manere, but maybe that's more a progressive taking time, like to continue.
  • Ablativus Temporalis (multis horis).

I'm not sure about the accusative for haec and eae. It's not intended to be an AcI.

1 Answer 1


As suggested by the answer to this question, the verb consumere is good for "taking a while". There does not seem to be a Latin phrase as flexible as the English "take" for time. Using this verb requires to refactor the sentence:

I consumed a lot of time reading all that — and writing this.

If this is acceptable, I suggest:

Multum temporis consumpsi illa omnia legens — et hoc scribens.

Unfortunately I have difficulties parsing your original suggestion. There are good elements, but for example the refactoring I suggest changes the grammatical role of reading and writing drastically; infinitives as subjects would be good if we only had a phrase for "taking a long time" to go with them.

I wrote multum temporis instead of multas horas, so that it simply means a lot of time (which will depend on context), rather than many hours. The neuter plural is indeed good for "this" and "that".

  • It doesn't seem quite right to me. Using the usual construction of consumere + in, can I suggest Multum temporis consumpsi in illa omnia legendo— et in hoc scribens.?
    – Tom Cotton
    Oct 29, 2018 at 12:14
  • @TomCotton I would expect multum temporis consumpsi in illis omnibus legendis, et in hoc scribendo.
    – Anonym
    Oct 29, 2018 at 17:12
  • @Anonym Yes, it's perfectly correct, but not obligatory, to use the 'gerundive attraction' here. I just preferred not to, looking for a less cumbersome sentence.
    – Tom Cotton
    Oct 30, 2018 at 10:39
  • 1
    @TomCotton I actually did that in part by accident...I meant rather to ask why you'd written in illa omnia legendo but in hoc scribens.
    – Anonym
    Oct 31, 2018 at 0:23
  • @TomCotton For some reason consumere with participle sounds more natural to me, but in with gerund or gerundive sounds good too, especially if there is precedent. Do you want to write another answer about that? I'm only glad if this old question gets more attention in form of answers than it has so far.
    – Joonas Ilmavirta
    Oct 31, 2018 at 2:45

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