Entertain Definition

entertained, entertaining, entertains
entertained, entertaining, entertains
To hold the interest of and give pleasure to; divert; amuse.
Webster's New World
To extend hospitality toward.
Entertain friends at dinner.
American Heritage
To keep up; maintain.
Webster's New World
To allow oneself to think about; have in mind; consider.
To entertain an idea.
Webster's New World
To give hospitality to guests.
Webster's New World

(obsolete) Entertainment; pleasure.


(obsolete) Reception of a guest; welcome.


Origin of Entertain

  • Middle English entertinen to maintain from Old French entretenir from Medieval Latin intertenēre Latin inter among inter– Latin tenēre to hold ten- in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Old French entretenir, from entre (“among”) + tenir (“to hold”), from Latin inter + teneō (“hold, keep”). For the noun, compare French entretien.

    From Wiktionary

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