I was messing around with verbs, and I was wondering what is the equivalent adverb for « Dum mi estis manĝinta ». So I thought of manĝintinte. But is this a correct word? And are manĝintonte and manĝontinte also correct? I decomposed them in « Dum mi estos manĝinta » and « Dum mi estis manĝonta ». But these adverbs look a bit silly, so I need some help. Thanks!

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    Dum mi estis manĝinta doesn't really make sense. Compare it with while I had eaten. There is no agreement between dum and estis ...inta. Commented Dec 25, 2020 at 20:07

2 Answers 2


Your question is quite broad, and to me it seems that you are mixing things.

​1. The active -ant/int/ont and the passive -at/it/ot endings form participles, not verbs.

The participles are used to:

  • to describe things as adjectives

      la leganta homo : the reading person

  • to name things as nouns

      leginto : one/person who has read

  • to form non-finite clauses as adverbs

       Skribonte leteron li kolektis siajn skribilojn : In order to write a letter he collected his pens.

While other word types are theoretically possible, like verbs legantas, those are in practice too complicated to understand and therefore can be regarded as avoidable.

​2. Compound tenses are seldomly needed.

The adjective participles can be used to form compound verb forms:

  • Mi estas manĝinta
  • La pomo estis manĝita

Since these forms use esti as the auxliary verb, they are to be regarded as descriptions of the action instead of the action itself. This may sound a minor thing, but can play a major in some contexts.

One of the early pioneers, Kazimierz Bein, influenced a lot on style. Thanks to his input we now mostly write Mi manĝis pomon instead of using compound tenses. Esperanto has its own verb aspects – see the prefix ek- and postfix -ad – but there is no aspect of continuous/non-continuous action as in English. Trying to express those English phenomenon with compound participle constructions is usually a bad idea right from the beginning and very often the result does not express what you intended to say.

​3. Piling pre- and postfixes is not a good idea.

While in theory you can pile as many pre- and postfixes as you wish, the practical limit is one pre- and two postfixes. More just make words unnecessary complicated to understand and are superfluous. This is formulated in la principo de neceso kaj sufiĉo.

So a word like manĝintinte with three postfixes (manĝ + int + int + e) is incomprehensible.


So I thought of manĝintinte. But is this a correct word?

No, it is not. The participle endings -inte (-ante, -onte) are always attached to a verb root. Otherwise they don't make any sense.

So, you cannot chain them like you just did: manĝint-int-e because the last -inte would be attached to manĝint- (not a verb root).

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