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Late Caledonian dyke-swarms of northern Britain; spatial and temporal intimacy between lamprophyric and granitic magmatism around the Ross of Mull Pluton, Inner Hebrides

, : Late Caledonian dyke-swarms of northern Britain; spatial and temporal intimacy between lamprophyric and granitic magmatism around the Ross of Mull Pluton, Inner Hebrides. Geologische Rundschau 76(3): 805-826

Numerous sheet intrusions in Iona and western Mull (Scotland) range from basic calc-alkaline lamprophyres (45% SiO2;mg number 65–75%; Thornton-Tuttle differentiation index [DI] 45%), through intermediate (microdioritic) compositions (malchites) to microgranitic porphyries (70% SiO2; DI 85%). Well-defined major element trends, remarkably consistent normalized multielement patterns, and strong linear correlations between homologous elements (e.g. Sc-V-Fe-Ti, Mg-Ni-Cr) suggest that these sheets form one cogenetic suite. Although Rb-Sr systems have been disturbed by Archaean country-rock contamination, isotopic signatures and field evidence suggest that sheet emplacement bracketed that of the 414 Ma Ross of Mull granitoid pluton: a few late sheets cut the pluton; exceptionally well-developed multiple and composite sheets provide clear evidence forsimultaneity of lamprophyric and granitic magmas; and an early group of sheets appears to be metamorphosed by the pluton. The composite sheets comprise lamprophyric borders around thicker microgranitic quartz-feldspar-porphyries, each rock-type carrying xenocrysts or xenoliths of the other. Mutual contacts mark wide discontinuities in major element composition, and sites of local hybridisation, yet close trace element similarities strongly imply the lamprophyres and porphyries are cogenetic. Least-squares modelling further shows that fractionation of actual phenocrysts in one lamprophyric margin could reproduce the porphyry with which it is in intimate contact. The most primitive (mg>70%) lamprophyres combine very high K, Rb, Th and Ba with MORB-like contents of Cr, Ni, Ti, Y, and Sc, implying a substantial mantle-derived component, and in some cases near-primary status, but not precluding some crustal participation. Biotite- and hornblende-lamprophyres are locally heteromorphic. Discontinuities in some chemical trends, field evidence, and initial87Sr/86Sr ratios (0.706), imply more complex interactions of fractionation and hybridisation with lamprophyric parent magmas, plus crustal contamination, in the genesis of the intermediate and microgranitic rocks. The association between lamprophyric and granitic magmatism in Iona/western Mull is not therefore fortuitous but genetic. The lamprophyres have an undoubted role in the genesis not merely of the microgranitic minor intrusions but probably of the granite pluton itself.


DOI: 10.1007/bf01821065

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