(4 syl.). Apollo loved Clytie, but forsook her for her
sister Leucothoe. On discovering this, Clytie pined away; and Apollo
changed her at death to a flower, which, always turning towards the
sun, is called heliotrope. (Greek, “turn-to-sun.”)
According to the poets, heliotrope renders the bearer invisible.
Boccaccio calls it a stone, but Solinus says it is the herb.
“Ut herba ejusdem nominis mixta et præcantationibus legitimis
consccrata, eum, a quocunque gestabitur, subtrahat visibus obviorum.”
No hope had they of crevice where to hide,
Or heliotrope to charm them out of view.
Dante: Inferno, xxiv.
“The other stone is heliotrope, which renders those who have it
invisible.” —Boccaccio: The Decameron, Novel iii., Eighth day.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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