From Old French entretenement, from entrete (to occupy, divert) + ment (adjective).
Unlike work or other tasks that require serious focus, entertainment can be lighthearted and often involves a sense of play. It can be a leisure activity such as solving a crossword puzzle or playing with a pet, or it may involve an elaborate performance intended for public viewing. It can range in scale from an individual choosing a private entertainment from a now enormous array of pre-recorded products, to a couple planning a romantic evening, to performances for thousands and even global audiences. Stories such as Scheherazade from the Persian professional storytelling tradition are powerful examples of entertainment that inspire retellings in music, film and video games.
The word is sometimes abbreviated entmt on fliers or in industry news publications where space is limited.