[ en-ter-teyn-muh nt ]
/ ˌɛn tərˈteɪn mənt /


the act of entertaining; agreeable occupation for the mind; diversion; amusement: Solving the daily crossword puzzle is an entertainment for many.
something affording pleasure, diversion, or amusement, especially a performance of some kind: The highlight of the ball was an elaborate entertainment.
hospitable provision for the needs and wants of guests.
a divertingly adventurous, comic, or picaresque novel.
Obsolete. maintenance in service.

Origin of entertainment

First recorded in 1525–35; entertain + -ment
Related formsnon·en·ter·tain·ment, noun, adjectivepre·en·ter·tain·ment, nounself-en·ter·tain·ment, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for self-entertainment

  • Her self-possession, her capacity for self-entertainment, the care she took not to arouse the others, all impressed him very much.

British Dictionary definitions for self-entertainment


/ (ˌɛntəˈteɪnmənt) /


the act or art of entertaining or state of being entertained
an act, production, etc, that entertains; diversion; amusement
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

Word Origin and History for self-entertainment



1530s, "provision for support of a retainer; manner of social behavior," now obsolete, along with other 16c. senses; from entertain + -ment. Meaning "the amusement of someone" is from 1610s; "that which entertains" is from 1650s; "public performance or display meant to amuse" is from 1727.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper