The Moine Supergroup of NW Scotland: insights into the analysis of polyorogenic supracrustal sequences

R. A. Strachan, R. E. Holdsworth, M. Krabbendham, G. I. Alsop

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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The Moine Supergroup of NW Scotland is a thick sequence of early Neoproterozoic sedimentary rocks, with minor igneous intrusions, that display evidence for multiple phases of regional deformation and metamorphism. The descriptions and interpretations of the ‘Moine Schists’ provided by the 1907 memoir (Peach et al. 1907) have been proved to be essentially correct and have laid the groundwork for a century of distinguished and influential research that has reached far beyond the confines of NW Scotland. The Survey workers recognized the sedimentary protoliths of these rocks, realized that they had been deposited unconformably on inliers of reworked basement gneisses that now occupy the cores of major folds, and understood the likely complexity of folding and the kinematic significance of mineral lineations. Further advances in understanding of the Moine rocks were mainly achieved through two techniques that were not available to the Survey workers of 100 years ago – geochronology and palaeomagnetism. Isotopic studies have confirmed the view of the Survey workers that the Moine rocks are of Precambrian age, and furthermore have demonstrated a complex, polyorogenic history.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)233-254
Number of pages22
JournalGeological Society Special Publications
Publication statusPublished - 2010


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