The corpus luteum, which means yellow body in Latin, is what is left of the follicle after a woman ovulates. During the follicular phase of a woman's cycle, several follicles develop under the influence of FSH (follicle stimulating hormone). Each follicle contains an egg. In a typical cycle only one egg will become mature enough for ovulation. When a woman ovulates the egg will burst from the follicle. Then what is left of the follicle will become the corpus luteum. The luteal phase, named after the corpus luteum, is the second half of a woman's menstrual cycle. The luteal phase begins after ovulation and continues until menstruation occurs.