Clytie.In the Collection of John Strange Esqr. Size of the Picture 17 inches Diameter.
John Boydell excudit 1778. Published May 1st. 1778, by John Boydell, Engraver, in Cheapside London.
Stipple engraving, 295 x 255mm. Light surface soiling.
Clytia (or Clytie) was a water nymph, daughter of Oceanus and Tethys in Greek mythology. She was loved by Apollo. Apollo, having loved her, abandoned her for Leucothea and left her deserted. She was so angered by his treatment that she told Leucothoe's father, Orchamus, about the affair. Since Apollo had defiled Leucothoe, Orchamus had her put to death by burial alive in the sands. Clytie had wanted Apollo back and had wanted to win him back by taking away his new love, but her actions only hardened Apollo's heart against her. She sat naked, with neither food nor drink, for nine days on the rocks, staring at the sun, Apollo, and mourning his departure. After nine days, the suffering turned her yellow and brown, and she was transformed into a sunflower (some researchers claim heliotrope or marigold), which turns its head always to look longingly at Apollo's chariot of the sun. This story is told in Ovid's Metamorphoses.
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