(third-person singular simple present amuses, present participle amusing, simple past and past participle amused)
- To entertain or occupy in a pleasant manner; to stir with pleasing emotions.
- I watch these movies because they amuse me.
- It always amuses me to hear the funny stories why people haven't got a ticket, but I never let them get in without paying.
- To cause laughter, to be funny.
- (archaic) To keep in expectation; to beguile; to delude.
- (archaic) To occupy or engage the attention of; to lose in deep thought; to absorb; also, to distract; to bewilder.
From Middle English amusen (“to mutter, be astonished, gaze meditatively on”), from Middle French amuser (“to amuse, divert, babble”), from Old French amuser (“to stupefy, waste time, be lost in thought”), from a- + muser (“to stare stupidly at, gape, wander, waste time, loiter, think carefully about, attend to”), of uncertain and obscure origin. Cognate with Occitan musa (“idle waiting”), Italian musare (“to gape idly about”). Possibly from Old French *mus (“snout”) from Proto-Romance *mūsa (“snout”) (—compare Medieval Latin mūsum (“muzzle, snout”)), from Proto-Germanic *mū- (“muzzle, snout”), from Proto-Indo-European *mū- (“lips, muzzle”). Compare North Frisian müs, mös (“mouth”), German Maul (“muzzle, snout”).
Alternative etymology connects Old French muser and Occitan musa with Old Frankish *muoza (“careful attention, leisure, idleness”), from Proto-Germanic *mōtǭ (“leave, permission”), from Proto-Indo-European *med- (“to acquire, possess, control”). Cognate with Old High German *muoza (“careful attention, leisure, idleness”), Old High German muozōn (“to be idle, have leisure or opportunity”), German Muße (“leisure”). More at empty.