Halo (religious iconography)
From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
A halo (Template:Lang-el; also known as a nimbus, aureole, glory, or gloriole) is a ring of light that surrounds a person in art. They have been used in the iconography of many religions to indicate holy or sacred figures, and have at various periods also been used in images of rulers or heroes. In, among other religions, Hellenistic Greek, Roman, Hindu, Buddhist and Christian sacred art, sacred persons may be depicted with a halo in the form of a circular glow, or in Asian art flames, around the head, or around the whole body, this last often called a mandorla. Halos may be shown as almost any colour, but as they represent light are most often depicted as golden, yellow, white, or red when flames are depicted.