The act or practice of entertaining. Often used to describe any kind of show or activity meant for public amusement, but it can also be applied to activities that are intended to give pleasure, gratify, or delight. Entertainment can occur on any scale and in any medium. It has also shown a remarkable ability to transcend its media and remain constant over time, as familiar forms reappear in new contexts with fresh appeal. The term may also be regarded as a synonym for amusement or enjoyment, although many activities that are commonly understood to be entertainment have serious purpose and may provide insight or intellectual stimulation. Origin: mid-15c., from Old French entretenement (compare entertain) (see entertain). A common suffix in forming nouns, also with verb stems -mentum (as in amazement, betterment, merriment) and, in English, -ment.