Gold and White Are Divine
In many western and European societies, the colors gold and white are associated with goodness and divinity. White and gold invoke images of Heaven and angels, and embody purity and incorruptibility. White shines brighter than any other light, and in modern times we know it to be a pure combination of all other shades, while gold never tarnishes, rusts or corrodes, and of course is one of the most valuable minerals on Earth, especially in ancient times. The color white is also associated with the other big precious metal, silver, and of course Silver Has Mystic Powers
Thus in works of media, you're likely to see divine beings clad in white and gold. As white and gold can represent the sky as part of their association with Heaven, blue
may also be featured. The deities may be associated with the colors beyond clothing, and thus have silver/white or golden
hair, with pale or bronze skin. Even if the gods are not good
, the colors will still reflect their divinity. The colors may also feature on their relics. Mortals who are connected to the gods, or wish to appear as divine figures
, will also wear white and gold.
of Good Colors, Evil Colors
and Color-Coded for Your Convenience
Compare Color-Coded Patrician
, Light is Good
, Light Is Not Good
, Woman in White
, Man in White
, Supernatural Is Purple
, Heavenly Blue
Contrast Red and Black and Evil All Over
, Evil Wears Black
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Anime and Manga
- Digimon, numerous Angel Digimon are colored white, gold and blue. Angemon and Angewomon are probably the most famous.
- In Saint Beast, the head god Zeus wears a white chiton with gold accessories while the angels dress in a variety of colours in comparison.
- The Gold Saints in Saint Seiya. Divine? Definitely. Good? Well, not all of them.
- Gilgamesh in Fate series definitely evokes this trope. He's also the biggest jackass of all.
- In Ah! My Goddess, the signature colors of Belldandy's goddess "uniforms" are blue, white and gold. As depicted in The Movie, the Heavens consist of futuristic white marble buildings with gold trim and lots of trees throughout.
- In Saiyuki, Genjyo Sanzo has golden hair and dresses in white, as did his mentor Koumyou Sanzo, and his previous incarnation Konzen Douji. None of them are exactly traditional in their divinity, but a Sanzo priest is the highest rank there is, and Konzen was a minor noble in Heaven.
- Knight Carim Gracia of Lyrical Nanoha. High Priestess of the Saint Church with a magic color of gold.
- Blue Exorcist's Arthur Auguste Angel, the current Paladin of the True Cross Order, dresses in white and has blond hair...and is probably one of the most jerkiest characters in the series.
- Subverted (or Deconstructed) by the gold and white Lancelot Knightmare Frame mecha piloted Amuro Ray and Kira Yamato expy, Suzaku Kururugi in Code Geass, a kind-hearted person who serves the evil Britannian Empire, being Japanese (the son of the former Prime Minister no less) he is subject to the usual racism from Britannians but his skills as a warrior and ace pilot as well as wells being a pseudo-noble grants him status as a honorary Britannian. He and a lot of Britannians have some gold and white on their clothes.
- Subverted in Kakumeki Valvrave, citizens of Dorssia, the antagonists have white and gold uniforms.
- Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Madoka's Magical Girl forms have always had a white motif, but becoming a goddess lands her a pair of Supernatural Gold Eyes on top of it.
- The Phoenix in X-Men. Normally green and yellow (same colors as Jean's outfit immediately prior to becoming Phoenix, in the comics), turning red when she becomes Dark Phoenix. However, the most perfect melding of Phoenix Force and host is the "white-hot Phoenix of the crown," in which the suit becomes white and gold. We've seen this form on extremely rare occasion.
- For the first time in decades, Iron Fist switched the colours of his suit towards the end of the first arc of New Avengers Vol 2. At time of writing, his costume is gold and white, rather than the green and yellow that it usually is. Note that this wasn't entirely explained in-universe.
- Roy Batty in Blade Runner. In his final scene and the film's climax, he gives an enlightened monologue and is established as a divine, pure being - despite being a replicant - because of his understanding of the world. Whilst he gives it, he is bathed in very bright, white light.
- The gods featured in the recent Clash of the Titans, especially Zeus's sparkly getup.
- Darken Rahl, the Big Bad from the first book of The Sword of Truth series, was wearing white with a narrow band of gold, and a knife in a golden scabbard. He was worshiped like a god, tried to obtain godlike powers through an ancient artifact, and served the devil.
- In Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian story "Shadows In The Moonlight", the demi-god and god Olivia dreams of are blond and pale skinned:
They were pressing about one bound to a pillar: a slender white-skinned youth, with a cluster of golden curls about his alabaster brow. His beauty was not altogether human—like the dream of a god, chiseled out of living marble.
- Mentioned in Raymond E. Feist's Riftwar Saga. In Tsurani culture the Emperor (known as the Light of Heaven) has White and Gold as his house colours. Expanded on in the Empire trilogy co-written with Janny Wurts.
- The original expression, "a land flowing with milk and honey", is a reference in the Hebrew Bible to the agricultural abundance of the Land of Israel. The phrase is used by God in the Book of Exodus during Moses' vision of the burning bush (Exodus 3:1–22). Another name for Israel is the Promised Land or Holy Land and since milk is white and honey is gold...
- In Angel the local direct agents of The Powers That Be were at one point represented by gold-fleshed humanoids in white togas.
- Averted in Supernatural where the angels are almost always sporting black business suits (Sans Castiel, who, while not only wearing a suit, also wears a light brown trench coat)
- The Emperor from Warhammer 40,000, when he's not depicted as a rotting corpse at least.
- Many Fairy-type and Light-attribute monsters in Yu-Gi-Oh!, including high-ranking Fairies The Splendid Venus◊, Athena◊, Tethys Goddess of Light◊, and the Airknight Parshath◊ line. The "Lightray◊" archetype is designed around the idea of Good Counterparts of existing monsters (an earlier archetype featured Evil Counterparts), and their outfits are recolored white, gold and blue. The "Lightsworns◊" also feature white armor with gold details.
- in Dungeons & Dragons, yellow, gold, and white are the favored colors of Pelor, the most generically good of the various good-aligned gods.
- The Unconquered Sun and his chosen Solar heroes in Exalted tend to radiate a lot of Glorious Golden Power. That said, this game subverts almost all of the preconceptions of a standard fantasy world, so expect plenty of Light Is Not Good, Good Is Not Nice, Good Is Not Soft, and other such tropes in play. Also, there's much more variation in the coloring; Solar auras include not just gold and white, but also the reds and violets of sunrise and sunset.
- In Magic: The Gathering, Angels, humanoid manifestations of (normally white) mana, tend to favor gold and white clothing. Angels with different mana alignment tend to have more varied outfits.
- In BIONICLE Takanuva, Toa of Light, wears white and gold armor. Subverted with the Matoran tribe of Light; they too have natural white-and-gold armor but can use their power over light to change how it appears, making it look any color but white and gold.
- Father Balder in Bayonetta uses a white and gold costume. Divine? Certainly, as the last of the Lumen Sages. Good? Haha, no.
- Page picture provided by Cosmos of Dissidia: Final Fantasy, the game's Big Good and Goddess of Harmony. In the same game her protector and leader of the heroes and all-around shining paragon of light, the Warrior of Light, wears primarily blue armor with khaki and white.
- The "Light Emperor◊" of Final Fantasy II rules over Heaven and wears light yellow and gold robes with lavendar and white details, a gold crest and white wings.
- Cecil of Final Fantasy IV has, Depending on the Artist, gold, white and blue armor as a Paladin.
- Crisis Core has Minerva.
- Final Fantasy XIII, Galenth Dysley wears a white robe with gold and blue colorings. His title in the Japanese version of the game is even "Great Pope", and so he looks the part. Zigzagged by his true form Barthandelus, which at first appears almost entirely black with sparse white and gold details, but lightens to silver and white with more prominent gold colorings in subsequent battles.
- In the same game, Orphan appears as a gold and white being.
- Hope wears the same colors in Final Fantasy XIII-2, probably as a conscious decision by the character designers to denote he serves a similar role in society.
- Several Final Fantasy games set in Ivalice feature Ultima the High Seraph, with blue-green skin and robes of white and gold.
- The royal family of the herons have long gold hair, white wings and dress exclusively in white and gold. They are compared to and framed as angels more than once. The tribe has been said to be closer to the goddess than others.
- A more subtle example in the same setting, Micaiah's combination of silver hair and gold eyes are a sign of her ability to wake the goddesses and act as the vessel for one of them.
- Ultima: The Avatar, a near-Physical God by the end of the series, is commonly shown in white and silver armor with a gold ankh on the chest and blonde hair.
- Manaketes of the Divine Dragon tribe in the Fire Emblem series are either white or gold in their dragon forms.
- God of War, Zeus wears a white robe with gold armor.
- Helios is an interesting case in that he wears normally a golden armour complimented by a white toga, but he has a crimson cape as well.
- Arceus from Pokémon. It is mostly white with what appears to be a gold wheel around its mid-section and gold hooves. However, depending on the plate it is holding, the gold parts change color to match the color of the plate and the typing.
- Most angels of the Disgaea series.
- Breath of Fire III and IV, Ryu ends up with blonde hair and white-clothing whenever he transforms into his "final" form (Kaiser in III and God-Ryu in IV, respectively). Fou-Lu also counts if he absorbs Ryu in the non-canonical ending. Also, Infinity in IV, Fou-Lu's transformation if he absorbs Ryu, is a palette-swap of Tyrant Dragon, with white and gold skin, and blue divine wings.
- Fina's dress in Skies of Arcadia.
- In the Monster Rancher series, the holy-aspected Gali is gold and white, and all monsters with the Gali subtype gain that coloring and the holy aspect.
- Shinkoku officials abuse this trope (along with some silver) in Asura's Wrath. They set themselves up as immortal cyborg demigod saviors, but in reality they are exploiting the people for their Mantra.
- In The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, Zelda dresses like this after falling to the surface, indicating that she's an incarnation of the goddess Hylia.
- The Big Bad of the Onimusha series is the God of Light, Fortinbras. As such he always appears in gold, silver or white colors. His divinity is unquestioned, but his goodness is certainly non-existent.
- The Prester Zuul in Sword of the Stars II, who made a Heel-Faith Turn to Catholicism, favour this colour scheme.◊
- In Tales of Symphonia, Yggdrasill has long, golden hair and dresses in a white bodysuit with gold decorations. He's the leader of Cruxis, the game's organization of angels. He's also the Big Bad.
- In Darksiders, this is the color scheme of most of the angels and their angelic gryphon mount that the protagonist steals from them.
- The Holy Light of World of Warcraft is associated with this, and its paladins and priests (e.g. Tirion Fordring and the Prophet Velen) are often seen in said colors (Heavenly Blue is a common tertiary color, but purple (especially among draenei) and red (especially among blood elves and the Scarlet Crusade) also occur somewhat frequently).
- Sirius, your one ally for most of Bomberman 64, wears white and gold armor, and he completes the angelic look by housing his rockets in a set of mechanical wings. It turns out he wants the Omni Cube for himself to gain godlike powers for real.
- In The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, the driving force behind the civil war between the Imperials and the Stormcloaks is the White-Gold Concordat, the name given to the peace treaty that was forged between the Imperials and the Thalmor, which, as part of the agreement, stipulates that the Imperials needed to outlaw the worship of Talos. The Thalmor do consider themselves to be a superior, divine race, charged with the extinction of every other race, be they human, elf or beast.
- In Exterminatus Now, an angel in a demon-infested site is white and yellow.
- In Our Little Adventure, Angelo poses as this down to glowing yellow eyes when angered.
- In The Order of the Stick, Elan's Good Angel is blue faced, white bodied, and golden winged. So, apparently is Belkar's, though we can't see the white body.
- In The Adventures of Shan Shan, the winged lion is yellow with white wings.
- In Rusty and Co., Madeline's "power of the gods to heal" — a white beam inside a golden glow.
- In the webcomic Overcompensating, God wears a white robe with golden letters spelling out "YHWH". Jesus wears a similar attire that says "INRI", though often the color of his robe is more beige or light brown.
- The colors gold, white, and red are associated with the God of Time in Tasakeru. Likewise with silver, white, and blue for the Goddess of Life.
- In the Worm universe, Scion, the first superhero, is a golden figure wearing a white jumpsuit. We later learn that 'he' is actually an extraterrestrial interdimensional alien who took that form to invoke the trope.
- This trope can be traced back to the ancient statues of gods which were covered with ivory and gold, such as the statue of Zeus at Olympia, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. This was so common that there is a term, "chryselephantine", used solely to refer to such statuary.
- Apollo's weapons are reffered as silver or gold interchangibly.
- Most swans have mainly white bodies with golden head and nape feathers (best seen in mute and trumpeter swans). That added to their divine reputation, and connected them further to sun gods.
- The clothing of many gods from Egyptian Mythology is white with gold trim, particularly the ones that wear kilts like Anubis.
- Gold itself was considered the skin of the gods in ancient Egypt. Pharoh death masks were made of the stuff to symbolize the formerly mortal king joining the ranks of godhood.
- The Pope, of course, and numerous symbols of Christianity, including the Keys to Heaven, a gold and a silver key overlaid.
- The Catholic Church invokes this trope at Christmas.
- The flags and arms of the Kingdom of Jerusalemnote and Vatican Citynote are the only ones allowed to use gold and white/silver together—normally the rules of heraldry forbid putting two metal colours together—precisely because it is seen as exceptional and holy.
- Catholic churches in general like to fly white and yellow flag, and in Germany road signs noting the hours of worship in a nearby Catholic church show a stylized yellow church on white.
- There were and are a few other places using yellow and white flags, e. g. the duchy (later kingdom and Prussian province) of Hanover (yellow over white, still used today in those parts of Lower Saxony that used to belong to Hanover) and the Prussian province of Silesia (white over yellow).
- The highest clergymen of some Buddhist order.
- LaVeyan Satanism has adopted black and silver as its colors precisely because it's more or less the Inversion of this trope.
- Though people specialising in Solrath and/or Moloch tend to use black and gold. And some use white anyways.