Philyra is not, as might be thought, a 'loving' name, since it means 'lime-tree' (philyra). This daughter of Oceanus and Tethys was discovered on an island in the Black Sea one day by Cronos, and he coupled with her in the form of a stallion, so as to deceive his wife Rhea.

Philyra later bore the offspring of this union and was horrified to see it was a monster with the body of a horse from the waist down. Deeply ashamed, she asked Zeus to change her into a lime or linden tree, and thus obtained her name.