KLYTIE (or Clytie) was an Okeanid nymph loved by sun-god Helios. When he abandoned her for the love of Leukothoe, she pined away and was transformed into the sun-gazing, purple flower of the heliotrope.
Klytie was probably identified with the Okeanis Klymene, the mother of Phaethon by Helios. Their names both mean "the famous one."
CLY′TIE (Klutiê), the name of three mythical personages. (Hes. Theog. 352; Ov. Met. iv. 305; Paus. x. 30. § 1; Tzetz. ad Lycoph. 421.)
Source: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology.
Hesiod, Theogony 346 ff (trans. Evelyn-White) (Greek epic C8th or 7th B.C.) :
"She [Tethys] brought forth also a race apart of daughters [i.e. the Okeanides] . . . They are . . . Zeuxo and Klytia (Clytia) [in a list of forty-one names.]
Now these are the eldest of the daughters who were born to Tethys and Okeanos, but there are many others beside these."
Pseudo-Hyginus, Preface (trans. Grant) (Roman mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"From Oceanus and Tethys [were born] the Oceanides--namely . . . Clytia, teschinoeno, clitenneste, Metis, Menippe [in a list of names]."
Ovid, Metamorphoses 4. 204, 234 & 256 (trans. Melville) (Roman epic C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"She [the Persian princess Leukothoe] was his [Helios the Sun's] one delight. Not Clymene, not Rhodos now had power to hold his hert, nor Circe's lovely mother, nor the girl, sad Clytie Clytie, who languished for his love, though scorned, and at that moment nursed her wound. All were forgotten for Leucothoe . . .
Clytie was jealous, for she loved Sol [Helios] beyond all measure. Spurred with anger against that paramour, she published wide the tale of shame and, as it spread, made sure her [Leukothoe's] father knew . . . [and through her tattling about the death of the girl.]
But Clytie, although her love might well excuse her grief and grief her tale-baring, the Lord of Light no longer visited; his dalliance was done. She pined and languished, as love and longing stole her wits away. Shunning the Nymphae, beneath the open sky, on the bare ground bare-headed day and night, she sat dishevelled, and for nine long days, with never taste of food or drink, she fed her hunger on her tears and on the dew. There on the ground she stayed; she only gazed upon her god's bright face as he rode by, and turned her head to watch him cross the sky. Her limbs, they say, stuck fast there in the soil; a greenish pallor spread, as part of her changed to a bloodless plant, another part was ruby red, and where her face had been a flower like a violet [i.e. the heliotrope] was seen. Though rooted fast, towards the sun she turns; her shape is changed, but still her passion burns."
- Hesiod, Theogony - Greek Epic C8th-7th B.C.
- Hyginus, Fabulae - Latin Mythography C2nd A.D.
- Ovid, Metamorphoses - Latin Epic C1st B.C. - C1st A.D.