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See more synonyms for aureole on Thesaurus.com
  1. a radiance surrounding the head or the whole figure in the representation of a sacred personage.
  2. any encircling ring of light or color; halo.
  3. Astronomy. corona(def 3).
  4. Geology. a zone of altered country rock around an igneous intrusion.
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Also au·re·o·la [aw-ree-uh-luh, uh-ree-] /ɔˈri ə lə, əˈri-/.

Origin of aureole

1175–1225; Middle English < Latin aureola (corona) golden (crown), equivalent to aure(us) golden (see aureate) + -ola, feminine of -olus -ole1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for aureole

corona, halo

Examples from the Web for aureole

Historical Examples of aureole

  • The moonlight caught her grey hair and burnished it to an aureole of silver.

    Jan and Her Job

    L. Allen Harker

  • Aureole: a ring of color which is usually diffuse outwardly.

  • My eyes came round to the aureole which was their usual magnet.

    A Daughter of Raasay

    William MacLeod Raine

  • There was an aureole of fine hairs about them which gave them the appearance of angel's wings.

  • The golden light of eventide illumined the city as with an aureole.

    On the Mexican Highlands

    William Seymour Edwards

British Dictionary definitions for aureole


aureola (ɔːˈriːələ)

  1. (esp in paintings of Christian saints and the deity) a border of light or radiance enveloping the head or sometimes the whole of a figure represented as holy
  2. a less common word for halo
  3. another name for corona (def. 2)
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Word Origin for aureole

C13: from Old French auréole, from Medieval Latin (corōna) aureola golden (crown), from Latin aureolus golden, from aurum gold
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for aureole


early 13c., from Latin aureola (corona), fem. diminutive of aureus "golden" (see aureate). In medieval Christianity, the celestial crown worn by martyrs, virgins, etc., as victors over the flesh.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

aureole in Science


  1. A band of metamorphic rock surrounding a body of cooled magma. Aureoles form through the process of contact metamorphism. See more at contact metamorphism.
  2. See corona.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.