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Peter Ivan and Štefan Méres


Three small bodies of amphibolites and associated graphitic gneisses from the Suchý and Malá Magura Mountains (Tatric Megaunit, central Western Carpathians) have been studied by petrographic and geochemical methods. Isolated, fault-bounded bodies first hundreds of meters in size are located in the complex of the Early Paleozoic paragneisses and migmatites intruded by the Lower Carboniferous granitoid rocks. Amphibolites (locally actinolite schists) were formed from effusive basalts, dolerites or isotropic gabbros hydrothermally altered and veined before the regional metamorphic transformation. Distribution of the trace elements relatively immobile during the metamorphic alteration (HFSE, REE, Cr, V, Sc) is similar to E-MORB type in the Malá Magura Mountain or to N-MORB/E-MORB types in the Suchý Mountain. Graphitic gneisses to metacherts are rich in silica (up to 88 wt. %) and Ctot, poor in other major element contents and display negative Ce-anomaly, enrichment in HREE, V, Cr and U. They were probably originally deposited as non-carbonate and silica-rich deep-sea sediments in anoxic conditions. The oceanic provenance of amphibolites and related graphitic gneisses clearly indicates their oceanic crust affinity and identity with the uppermost part of the ophiolite sequence. Ophiolite bodies from the Suchý and Malá Magura Mountains are supposed to be relic fault blocks identical with the Upper Devonian Pernek Group which represents a Variscan ophiolite nappe preserved to large extent in the Malé Karpaty Mountains located in the Tatric Megaunit further to the southwest. All these ophiolite relics are vestiges of the original ophiolite suture created by oceanic closure in the Lower Carboniferous.

Open access

Roman Aubrecht, Štefan Méres, Milan Sýkora and Tomáš Mikuš

Provenance of the detrital garnets and spinels from the Albian sediments of the Czorsztyn Unit (Pieniny Klippen Belt, Western Carpathians, Slovakia)

According to earlier concepts, the Czorsztyn Unit (Oravic Superunit, Pieniny Klippen Belt, Western Carpathians) sedimented on the isolated Czorsztyn Swell which existed in the Middle Jurassic-Late Cretaceous time in the realm of the Outer Western Carpathians. This paper brings new data providing an alternative interpretation of its Cretaceous evolution. They are based on heavy mineral analysis of the Upper Aptian/Lower Albian sediments of the Czorsztyn Unit. They rest upon a karstified surface after a Hauterivian-Aptian emersion and are represented by condensed, red marly organodetritic limestones with some terrigenous admixture (Chmielowa Formation). The heavy mineral spectrum is dominated by spinels, followed by garnet, with lesser amounts of zircon, rutile and tourmaline. The composition of the majority of the detrital garnets shows that they were derived from primary HP/UHP parental rocks which were recrystallized under granulite and amphibolite facies conditions. The garnets were most probably derived directly from the magmatic and metamorphic rocks of the Oravic basement, as the high-pyrope garnets are known to be abundant in Mesozoic sediments all over the Outer Western Carpathians. The presence of spinels is surprising. According to their chemistry, they were mostly derived from mid-oceanic ridge basalts (MORB) peridotites, supra-subduction zone peridotites (harzburgites) and transitional lherzolite/harzburgite types. Only a lesser amount of spinels was derived from volcanics of BABB composition (back-arc basin basalts). The presence of this ophiolitic detritus in the Czorsztyn Unit is difficult to explain. Ophiolitic detritus appeared in the Aptian/Albian time only in the units which were considered to be more distant, because they were situated at the boundary between the Central and the Outer Western Carpathians (Klape Unit, Tatric and Fatric domains). The hypothetical Exotic Ridge which represented an accretionary wedge in front of the overriding Western Carpathian internides was considered to be a source of the clastics. In previous paleogeographical reconstructions, the Czorsztyn Unit was situated north of the Pieniny Trough (considered to be one of the branches of the Penninic-Vahic Ocean). In the trough itself, the ophiolitic detritus appeared as late as in the Senonian and there was no way it could reach the Czorsztyn Swell which was considered to be an isolated elevation. The new results presented herein show that these reconstructions do not fit the obtained data and infer a possibility that the Czorsztyn sedimentary area was not isolated in the Cretaceous time and it was situated closer to the Central Carpathian units than previously thought. A new paleogeographical model of the evolution of the Pieniny Klippen Belt is presented in the paper: Oravic segment was derived from the Moldanubian Zone of the Bohemian Massif by the Middle Jurassic rifting which caused block tilting where most of the Oravic units were arranged north of the Czorsztyn Swell. The Oravic segment was situated in the lateral continuation of the Central and Inner Western Carpathians from which it was detached by later clockwise rotation. The Oravic segment was then laterally shifted in front of the Central Western Carpathians, together with remnants of the Meliatic suture zone which represented a source for the exotics to the Klape, Tatric, Fatric and Oravic units.

Open access

Jozef Madzin, Dušan Plašienka and Štefan Méres


The Pieniny Klippen Belt contains thickening and coarsening upwards synorogenic sedimentary successions witnessing the collision of the Oravic ribbon continent with the Central Carpathian orogenic wedge after the closure of the Vahic Ocean in the Late Cretaceous to Early Palaeogene. The sedimentary record of this event is represented by flysch/wildflysch deposits of the Maastrichtian–Lower/Middle Eocene Jarmuta–Proč Formation. We present results of the provenance study of these deposits, based on the framework petrography, heavy mineral analysis and mineral chemistry. Turbiditic sandstones were classified as quarzolithic to lithic arenites. Lithic fragments are predominantly composed of carbonate rocks and low- to medium-grade metamorphic and occasional mafic volcanic rocks. The heavy mineral association is composed of both first-cycle derived and recycled ultrastable ZTR, garnets and Cr-spinels. The chemistry of the detrital tourmalines and garnets suggests a derivation from various low- to medium-grade metamorphic rocks. High-pyrope garnets, observed in the eastern part of the PKB, which were derived from high-grade granulites and eclogites, represent probably lower crustal complexes exhumed during rifting of the Vahic Ocean. The Cr-spinels show a mixed harzburgitic and lherzolitic provenance. The harzburgitic Cr-spinels might have been recycled from older exotic conglomerates of the Klape Flysch, thereby representing ophiolitic detritus of the Meliata Ocean. The lherzolitic Cr-spinels might represent a new contribution of ophiolitic detritus delivered from the exhumed subcontinental mantle forming the Vahic oceanic floor.

Open access

Štefan Méres, Roman Aubrecht, Michał Gradziński and Milan Sýkora


Aubrecht, R., Meres, Š., Gradziński, M. and Sykora, M. 2012. High (ultrahigh) pressure metamorphic terrane rocks as the source of the detrital garnets from the Middle Jurassic sands and sandstones of the Cracow Region (Cracow- Wieluń Upland, Poland). Acta Geologica Polonica, 62 (2), 231-245. Warszawa. The Middle Jurassic (Upper Bathonian/Lower Callovian) sands and sandstones of the Cracow-Wieluń Upland contain detrital garnets with high contents of the pyrope molecule (30-73 mol %). The predominance of detrital pyrope garnets, and inclusions represented mainly by omphacite and kyanite, show that the garnets were derived from high (ultrahigh) pressure (H/UHP) metamorphic terrane rocks (garnet peridotites, eclogites and granulites). Their source is unknown. The Moldanubian Zone of the Bohemian Massif is closely comparable. However, the terranes between this zone and the Cracow- Wieluń Upland are dominated by almandine garnets. The relatively low proportion of almandine garnets in the examined samples indicates that transport of the detrital material could not have been from a far distant source as the garnet assemblage would otherwise be strongly dominated by almandine. A less distant possible source could have been the Gory Sowie Mts., which incorporate UHP/HP metamorphic rocks, but the exposed areal extent of these rocks is too small. It is possible that larger portions of these metamorphic rocks are buried beneath the Cenozoic cover and might have earlier represented a larger source area. Reworking of the entire heavy mineral spectra from older clastics is improbable because of the low maturity of the heavy mineral assemblages (higher proportion of less stable minerals). The source area therefore remains unknown. Most probably it was formed by primary crystalline complexes of lower crust to mantle origin, outcrops of which were not far distant from the area of deposition. Similar detrital garnet compositions were also recorded in the Outer Western Carpathians (Flysch Zone, Pieniny Klippen Belt), i.e. the crustal segments which formed the Silesian and Magura cordilleras; the Czorsztyn Swell was also formed by similar rocks.