You're welcome

shop-englishx

Banned
Urdu
Hello, my friends,

When someone helps us sort out the solution to a problem, we thank them by saying "thank you very much". They say, in response to our thankfulness:
You're welcome

What is the meaning of "welcome" here? What part of speech is it?

Why not say, "You're welcomed"?

Could someone enlighten on this?

Thanks a lot.
 
  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    Our dictionary calls "welcome" an adjective when it is used in this reply. I'm content with that categorization.

    If you use "welcome" as a verb, then "welcomed" is possible: They welcomed him into their home.

    Here's the etymology of the word:

    Etymology: 12th Century: changed (through influence of well1) from Old English wilcuma (agent noun referring to a welcome guest), wilcume (a greeting of welcome), from wil will² + cuman to come

    These days, I generally hear the well-intended but somewhat dismissive "No problem" when I thank younger speakers for something. :rolleyes: "You're welcome" seems to be fading into extinction in my part of the world.
     
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    shop-englishx

    Banned
    Urdu
    Thank you very much, owlman.

    If "welcome" is an adjective in "You're welcome", then what's its meaning? Is there any word you can think of can be replaced "welcome" with?
     

    owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    This cluster of definitions for "welcome" from our dictionary should give you a good place to start:

    1. gladly received:a welcome visitor.
    2. agreeable:a welcome rest.
    3. willingly permitted[ be + ~ + to + verb]You are welcome to try it.
    4. (used in the phrase You're welcome as a response to thanks):"Thank you.'' —"You're welcome.''
     

    owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    That's pretty close, SE. When I use "you're welcome" as an answer to "thank you", it means "I was glad to help you/etc." It's just a courteous, old-fashioned way to reply to "thank you."
     

    shop-englishx

    Banned
    Urdu
    The problem with that dictionary is that it doesn't tell us about the exact meaning of "welcome" in "you are welcome"; it does only tell that that is a phrase that is used as a response to someone's thanks.:(
     

    Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    It's obvously an adjective - it clearly can't be the noun "a welcome" which means an enthusiastic reception!

    Look at the etymology: "you are well come". Well come is a past participle phrase, describing the person, and meaning happily arrived. Whether it's my home that you're happily arrived at, or my gift that you've happily arrived in possession of, the meaning's the same.

    For clarification: well is an adverb (like happily) and come is a past participle (like arrived) which are here used together as an adjective to describe you.
     
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    shop-englishx

    Banned
    Urdu
    Thank you very much, Keith.

    And "you're welcome" as a response to "thank you" means that you are happily arrived in the possession of the help/favor that I've done to you, right?

    This help may be of any kind - e.g, the help the non-natives get from natives on this forum.

    Am I right?
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Thank you very much, Keith.

    And "you're welcome" as a response to "thank you" means that you are happily arrived in the possession of the help/favor that I've done to you, right?

    This help may be of any kind - e.g, the help the non-natives get from natives on this forum.

    Am I right?
    It might be worth saying that in BE we can say You are welcome to do X, which means I am happy for you to do X, or I have absolutely no objection to your doing X.

    The you are welcome in response to thank you often has that sense - I am very happy to have been of help to you, (ie. you are welcome to avail yourself of my help).
     
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