amuse

[ uh-myooz ]
/ əˈmyuz /

verb (used with object), a·mused, a·mus·ing.

to hold the attention of (someone) pleasantly; entertain or divert in an enjoyable or cheerful manner: She amused the guests with witty conversation.
to cause mirth, laughter, or the like, in: The comedian amused the audience with a steady stream of jokes.
to cause (time, leisure, etc.) to pass agreeably.
Archaic. to keep in expectation by flattery, pretenses, etc.
Obsolete.
  1. to engross; absorb.
  2. to puzzle; distract.

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Origin of amuse

1470–80; <Middle French amuser “to divert, amuse”; see a-5, muse

synonym study for amuse

Amuse, divert, entertain mean to occupy the attention with something pleasant. That which amuses is usually playful or humorous and pleases the fancy. Divert implies turning the attention from serious thoughts or pursuits to something light, amusing, or lively. That which entertains usually does so because of a plan or program that engages and holds the attention by being pleasing and sometimes instructive.

words often confused with amuse

See bemuse.

OTHER WORDS FROM amuse

a·mus·a·ble, adjectivea·mus·er, nounun·a·mus·a·ble, adjectiveun·a·mus·a·bly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for amuse

British Dictionary definitions for amuse

amuse
/ (əˈmjuːz) /

verb (tr)

to keep pleasantly occupied; entertain; divert
to cause to laugh or smile

Word Origin for amuse

C15: from Old French amuser to cause to be idle, from muser to muse 1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012