‘The Pleasure is All Mine': Meaning, Definition, and How to Reply

By Sophia Merton, updated on March 13, 2023

Did someone say to you, ‘the pleasure is all mine’, and you’re wondering what it means? In this article, we’ll take a look at the meaning, definition, how to reply, and more.

In brief:

‘The pleasure is all mine’ is a somewhat formal way to respond when someone has thanked you for something you’ve done. It can also be used in response to the phrases ‘nice to meet you’ or ‘it’s a pleasure to meet you.’

What Does 'The Pleasure Is All Mine' Mean?

‘The pleasure is all mine,’ sometimes written as ‘the pleasure’s all mine,’ is a polite way to respond to someone who thanks you for something. For example, if someone were to say, “thanks for inviting us to the concert; we had a great time,” you could say ‘the pleasure is all mine.’

This can also be used as a response when you meet a new person and they say, ‘it’s such a pleasure to meet you.’ You can respond with ‘the pleasure is all mine.’

Though this is a phrase that is still in use, it does come across as a bit formal. You might prefer to use this phrase in business contexts or when attending a deliberately formal event. In more casual settings, there are informal responses to both circumstances that might be more appropriate.

For example, if someone thanks you for inviting them to a concert, a more casual way to respond would be to say, ‘no problem!’ or ‘don’t mention it!’ rather than ‘the pleasure is all mine.’

Similarly, if someone tells you that it’s nice to meet you, a more relaxed and less stiff response would be to simply say, ‘it’s nice to meet you too’ instead of the more old-fashioned sounding ‘the pleasure is all mine.

Where Does 'The Pleasure Is All Mine' Come From?

Using the Google Books Ngram Viewer, we see that the phrase ‘the pleasure is all mine’ doesn’t appear in any publications until the 1860s.

We find one early example of the use of this phrase in The London Miscellany, published in 1866:

“Oh! My dear marquis,” said Mrs. Fincairn, “how do you do? This is indeed quite an unexpected pleasure.”

The pleasure is all mine, I assure you, madam. May I hope Miss Hartley is quite well?”

Quite well, I thank you,” said Emmeline quietly.”

Another example comes from Wilson’s Photographic Magazine, Volume 42, published in 1905:

“Now the secret, I think, of the whole thing is that I get enough for my work so that if I want to make fifty plates I can stand it. That aim to create artistic work has developed in me more within the last two years, because I have confined myself to the very best that I could do, and would not turn out a think that was not the best that I could do. My customers cannot buy anything that I think is bad work, even though they think it is good. This is possibly a very personal remake, but I was unconsciously drawn into telling these things to Mr. Hearn this evening, and he said “I want you to tell it to the people tonight.” If it has been of any use the pleasure is all mine.”

The word ‘pleasure’ comes from the late fourteenth-century meaning:

  • “Pleasing quality or thing, source of enjoyment, that which gratifies or pleases the senses or the mind.”

Though there don’t seem to be publications that use the phrase ‘the pleasure is all mine’ before the 1860s, the phrase ‘my pleasure’ was in use by at least the early 1800s, if not sooner.

Examples of 'The Pleasure Is All Mine' In Sentences

  • Person A: “I’m so glad you convinced me to come onto the boat with you this weekend! I’ve always been so nervous on the water, but I really had a lovely time.”
    • Person B: “Don’t worry about it. The pleasure was all mine.”
  • Person A: “I could never dream of having such a perfect vacation. I can’t thank you enough for putting all of this together for us.”
    • Person B: “Don’t worry about it. Honestly, the pleasure is all mine.”
  • Person A: “I’m so glad to finally meet you. It really is such a pleasure.”
    • Person B: “The pleasure is all mine.”
  • Person A: “I can tell that the freshmen have really been enjoying the movie series you put together. Thanks for putting so much time and energy into it.”
    • Person B: “I’ve had a great time myself. The pleasure is all mine.”
  • Person A: “It’s been so nice to have you visiting this weekend. As my mother has been aging, she hasn’t been spending much time with other people. I know it meant a lot to her.”
    • Person B: “Oh, please. The pleasure is all mine.
  • Person A: “I can’t believe we’re going to that concert this weekend. I know Sally is so looking forward to it. Thanks again for going to the trouble of tracking down the tickets.”
    • Person B: “It’s not a problem at all. The pleasure is all mine.”
  • Person A: “I am so glad we were able to get together this weekend.”

How to Respond to ‘The Pleasure Is All Mine’

Usually, a person will say, ‘the pleasure is all mine’ after someone else has expressed their gratitude or said something along the lines of ‘nice to meet you.’ This means that the phrase commonly will end one segment of the conversation, and you can typically move on to the next topic.

It’s worth noting that ‘the pleasure is all mine’ is a fairly formal phrase at this point. While people do still say it, it might come off as a bit stuffy in a casual interaction. In the next section, we’ll look at some other things you can say instead of ‘the pleasure is all mine.’

Other Ways to Say 'The Pleasure Is All Mine'

What are some other words and phrases that have a similar meaning to 'The Pleasure Is All Mine'?

Here are some more casual options if you want to respond to someone who is thanking you:

  • Don’t worry about it!
  • You’re welcome
  • I’m always happy to help
  • No problem
  • No big deal
  • Don’t sweat it
  • Anytime

If you are looking for an alternative to ‘the pleasure is all mine’ after someone has said something like ‘it’s nice to meet you’ or ‘it’s a pleasure to meet you,’ here are some options:

  • It’s nice to meet you too
  • I’m so happy to finally meet you
  • Thanks so much! It’s lovely meeting you

Final Thoughts About ‘The Pleasure Is All Mine’

‘The pleasure is all mine’ is a polite yet somewhat formal response when a person has thanked you for something you’ve done. It can also be used when someone tells you, ‘nice to meet you’ or ‘it’s a pleasure to meet you.’

While this phrase is still commonly used, it definitely has an air of formality about it. For example, you might expect to hear it at a fancy dinner party or a high society event. On the other hand, it could potentially sound a bit stuffy and out of place if you were to use it in a more casual setting.

For example, let’s say that you are in your early 20s and you are meeting another person about your age. If they say, ‘it’s really nice to meet you!’ and you say, ‘the pleasure is all mine,’ it could come off as way too formal for the occasion. More appropriate responses in this type of situation might be to simply say, ‘it’s nice to meet you too!’ or something similar.

Are you ready to learn more English idioms and phrases? Head over to our idioms blog for tons of expressions, sayings, idioms, and adages.

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Written By:
Sophia Merton
Sophia Merton is one of the lead freelance writers for WritingTips.org. Sophia received her BA from Vassar College. She is passionate about reading, writing, and the written word. Her goal is to help everyone, whether native English speaker or not, learn how to write and speak with perfect English.

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