pleasure

noun
plea·​sure | \ ˈple-zhər How to pronounce pleasure (audio) , ˈplā- How to pronounce pleasure (audio) \

Definition of pleasure

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : desire, inclination wait upon his pleasure— William Shakespeare
2 : a state of gratification
3a : sensual gratification
b : frivolous amusement
4 : a source of delight or joy

pleasure

verb
pleasured; pleasuring\ ˈplezh-​riŋ How to pronounce pleasuring (audio) , ˈplāzh-​ ; ˈple-​zhə-​ , ˈplā-​ \

Definition of pleasure (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to give pleasure to : gratify
2 : to give sexual pleasure to

intransitive verb

1 : to take pleasure : delight
2 : to seek pleasure

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Choose the Right Synonym for pleasure

Noun

pleasure, joy, and enjoyment mean the agreeable feeling that accompanies getting something good or much wanted. pleasure is used for a feeling of happiness or satisfaction that may not be shown openly. He took pleasure in helping others. joy is used for a radiant feeling that is very strong. Hers is a life filled with joy. enjoyment is used for a conscious reaction to something intended to make a person happy. The songs added to our enjoyment of the movie.

Examples of pleasure in a Sentence

Noun

I paint for the sheer pleasure of it. His grandparents took great pleasure in seeing him graduate from college. Is this trip for business or pleasure? It is a special pleasure for me to be here with you today. Now I can enjoy the simple pleasures of life, like spending time with my family.

Verb

a wine that is sure to pleasure even the most discriminating palate
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Helpful both in alleviating pain and in giving pleasure, pot has been wildly popular in the decades since the Single Convention and the drug-control treaties that followed it. The Economist, "A global revolution in attitudes towards cannabis is under way," 31 Aug. 2019 Although Rinpoche became controversial because of his pursuit of worldly pleasures, his shrine was completed in 2001 with a giant gilded Buddha inside. Tom Noel, The Know, "9 odd places that you should include on a Colorado road trip, from a giant hot dog to fake cliff dwellings," 25 Aug. 2019 Wilder romanticizes what could be a hard life and turns it into a life of hope, celebration, and simple pleasures, which is very touching. Elena Nicolaou, refinery29.com, "Little House, Big Fans: These People Really, Really Love Laura Ingalls Wilder," 24 Aug. 2019 Don’t issue a communiqué—that’s the strategy of French President Emmanuel Macron, who has the pleasure of hosting this year’s event in Biarritz. David Meyer, Fortune, "UPS’s Drone Hopes: CEO Daily," 22 Aug. 2019 Another type dampens reward networks, robbing a person of the ability to feel pleasure, a depression symptom called anhedonia. Emily Underwood, Science | AAAS, "Brain scans could help personalize treatment for people who are depressed or suicidal," 20 Aug. 2019 Officers Kelly, Clark & I had the pleasure of mowing Ms. Fleming’s lawn for her . Ashley Remkus | Aremkus@al.com, al, "Alabama’s Rodney Smith Jr. launches 50-state ‘Mowing with Cops’ tour," 13 Aug. 2019 Langcaster-Jones believes Love Island’s popularity is in part due to that innate, voyeuristic pleasure — the bedrock of the reality TV genre, really — so many get in watching people’s emotions and intimate relationships play out in real-time. Kate Samuelson, Time, "CBS Renewed Love Island Despite Lackluster Ratings. Can the Show Find its Happily Ever After in Season Two?," 12 Aug. 2019 Now 70, Russo clearly knows the pleasures and perils of retrospection, and he's constructed a novel about the way the past constantly bleeds into the present. Ron Charles, Dallas News, "In Richard Russo's 'Chances Are...,' a charming reunion unearths a chilling disappearance," 30 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

He was accused of abusing underage girls and of directing some of them to pleasure some of his rich and powerful friends, including Andrew. Martha Ross, The Mercury News, "As Jeffrey Epstein’s houseguest, Prince Andrew received foot massages from young Russian women, author reveals," 23 Aug. 2019 Advocates of a morally correct path to happiness also disapprove of taking shortcuts to pleasure with the help of psychotropic drugs. Rafael Euba, Quartzy, "Why striving for happiness makes people miserable," 23 July 2019 Sometimes, Winslow would pleasure himself at his locker or in his hotel room on team road trips. cleveland.com, "Kellen Winslow Jr.’s disturbing behavior began early in pro career, Sports Illustrated article says," 14 June 2019 Hell, the only mistress he’d had, years ago, hadn’t figured out how to pleasure him like this. Eliza Thompson, Cosmopolitan, "Eloisa James Shares a Steamy Excerpt From Her New Book Too Wilde to Wed," 9 Jan. 2018 After all, there’s room for only one man in this administration who has the ability to pleasure himself. Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter, "Critic's Notebook: The Mooch Admits He Made an "Unforced Error" in First TV Interview," 13 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pleasure.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of pleasure

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1537, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for pleasure

Noun

Middle English plesure, alteration of plesir, from Anglo-French plaisir, from plaisir to please

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Statistics for pleasure

Last Updated

2 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pleasure

The first known use of pleasure was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for pleasure

pleasure

noun

English Language Learners Definition of pleasure

: a feeling of happiness, enjoyment, or satisfaction : a pleasant or pleasing feeling
: activity that is done for enjoyment
: something or someone that causes a feeling of happiness, enjoyment, or satisfaction

pleasure

noun
plea·​sure | \ ˈple-zhər How to pronounce pleasure (audio) \

Kids Definition of pleasure

1 : a feeling of enjoyment or satisfaction I take great pleasure in reading.
2 : recreation or enjoyment Is the trip for business or pleasure?
3 : something that pleases or delights It's been a pleasure working with you.
4 : a particular desire What is your pleasure?

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