1. Any collection of rods, normally gilded, representing sunbeams, radiating from a centre. In religious contexts it is common in Baroque architecture, surrounding e.g. a dove, representing the Holy Spirit.
2. In a secular context, the rods occur around the head of e.g. Apollo, in Apolline ornament of the Louis Quatorze style.
sun·burst / ˈsənˌbərst/ • n. a sudden brief appearance of the full sun from behind clouds. ∎ a decoration or ornament resembling the sun and its rays: [as adj.] a pair of sunburst diamond earrings. ∎ a pattern of irregular concentric bands of color with the brightest at the center.