Entertaiment is a broad concept with an enormous variety. It can be a private experience that one selects for themselves from a rapidly expanding array of pre-recorded products; a banquet adapted for two; a family celebration with music and dance; or a performance intended for thousands of people. Although entertainment often involves amusement, it may also have a serious purpose, as in the various forms of ceremony, celebration, religious festival, and satire. Entertainment evolves to meet changing tastes, needs, and technology, with many themes and images demonstrating remarkable longevity.

The etymology of the word is not clear, and it seems to have evolved from a number of different sources.