A certificate has multiple meanings.

It could be a fancy scrap of paper that says you did something.

It could be a digital security certification like that used by web browsers.

The age classification of a film in the UK. See: U, PG, 12, 15, 18, R18.

The classification is legally binding. Ie, the cinema, or video retailer can be prosecuted if they let someone under that age see the film or video.

For a film (or video programme) to be released on video, it must (by law) be certified by the BBFC as being suitable for persons above a specific age, or as being suitable for all viewers. Films at cinemas needn't necessarily be certified by the BBFC; they can be given a local authority certificate instead, but this is only done with a few art house films. There are different rules for film societies as well. If the BBFC denies a film a certificate, it is in effect, banned from video release. There's different standards for film and video releases too. A film may be certified for one age at the cinema, but a different age on video, or may be denied a video certificate altogether (because videos have pause buttons. :)

The certificate is shown before the film in cinemas. In the olden days, they used to also have to hang a copy of the certificate outside the cinema.

Before some time in the early 80s, the certificates were U, PG, A, and X.

Cer*tif"i*cate (?), n. [F. certificat, fr. LL. certificatus made certain, p. p. of certificare. See tify.]


A written testimony to the truth of any fact; as, certificate of good behavior.


A written declaration legally authenticated.

Trial by certificate, a trial which the testimony of the person certifying is the only proper criterion of the point in dispute; as, when the issue is whether a person was absent in the army, this is tried by the certificate of the proper officer in writing, under his seal.



© Webster 1913.

Cer*tif"i*cate (?), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Certificated; p. pr. & vb. n. Certificating.] [See Certify.]


To verify or vouch for by certificate.


To furnish with a certificate; as, to certificate the captain of a vessel; a certificated teacher.


© Webster 1913.

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