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American Mineralogist

Journal of Earth and Planetary Materials

Ed. by Baker, Don / Xu, Hongwu / Swainson, Ian

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Volume 104, Issue 5


Geochemical characteristics of lawsonite blueschists in tectonic mélange from the Tavşanlı Zone, Turkey: Potential constraints on the origin of Mediterranean potassium-rich magmatism

Yu Wang
  • State Key Laboratory of Isotope Geochemistry, Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640, China
  • ARC Centre of Excellence for Core to Crust Fluid Systems/GEMOC; Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Macquarie University, New South Wales 2109, Australia
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  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Dejan Prelević
  • Faculty of Mining and Geology, Belgrade University, Đušina 7, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
  • Institute for Geosciences, University of Mainz, Becherweg 21, Mainz 55099, Germany
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  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Stephen F. Foley
  • ARC Centre of Excellence for Core to Crust Fluid Systems/GEMOC; Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Macquarie University, New South Wales 2109, Australia
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2019-04-26 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2138/am-2019-6818


The petrology, mineralogy, and geochemistry of lawsonite blueschists from the Tavşanlı zone in northwest Turkey—one of the best-preserved blueschist terranes in the world—have been comprehensively investigated. The blueschist samples contain lawsonite + sodic amphibole + phengite + chlorite + titanite + apatite ± aragonite ± quartz ± relict igneous pyroxene ± Mn-rich garnet and opaque phases. Lawsonite is a significant repository for Sr, Pb, Th, U, and REE, whereas phengite carries the most large-ion lithophile element (LILE), titanite hosts the highest Nb and Ta as well as considerable amounts of high field strength element (HFSE), and apatite strongly controls Sr. Two groups of blueschist have different origins—enriched continent-derived terrigenous origin and mid-ocean ridge basalts (MORB)-like submarine basalts—assigned on the basis of whole-rock major and trace element compositions and initial Sr-Nd-Pb isotopic results. Lawsonite in blueschist with enriched origin exhibits strong Th/La fractionation, raising the possibility of the involvement of blueschist facies mélange to explain the origin of Mediterranean potassium-rich magmatism because similarly high Th/La ratios are also observed in the Mediterranean potassium-rich lavas. We propose that subduction-induced tectonic imbrication took place entirely at shallow depths (<80 km), giving rise to a newly formed lithosphere where oceanic and continental crustal materials, sediments, strongly depleted peridotite blocks, and metamorphic rocks are all imbricated together, and in which many of the compositional characteristics of the lawsonite blueschist are sequestered. Subsequent melting of the fertile and enriched components in this new lithosphere would result in the generation of potassium-rich post-collisional mafic magmas with diagnostic geochemical affinities.

Keywords: Lawsonite blueschist; Sr-Nb-Pb isotope; protolith of blueschist; the Tavşanlı zone; K-rich magmatism; high Th/La

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About the article

Orcid 0000-0001-6560-0654

Received: 2018-09-17

Accepted: 2019-01-15

Published Online: 2019-04-26

Published in Print: 2019-05-27

FundingThis work was supported by the Strategic Priority Research Program (B) of Chinese Academy of Sciences (Grant No. XDB18000000), National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 41773055) and the ARC Centre of Excellence for Core to Crust Fluid Systems/GEMOC. This is contribution 1305 from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Core to Crust Fluid Systems (http://www.ccfs.mq.edu.au) and 1296 in the GEMOC Key Centre (http://www.gemoc.mq.edu.au). The Macquarie University HDR Fund supported experimental and analytical work. Fieldwork in Turkey was funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft.

Citation Information: American Mineralogist, Volume 104, Issue 5, Pages 724–743, ISSN (Online) 1945-3027, ISSN (Print) 0003-004X, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2138/am-2019-6818.

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