The collision tectonics of the southern Greek Neotethys

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Continental collision in the Aegean area has produced a collage of micro-continental blocks, which were accreted to the active margin of Eurasia in Early Tertiary times. Studies undertaken in the Argolis Peninsula of southern Greece, located at the southern end of the Pelagonian continental terrane, confirm that this block was rifted from Gondwana in Mid Triassic times. By Mid Jurassic times at the latest, actively spreading oceanic basins had opened in both the Pindos and Vardar Zones on either side of this block. Identification of Late Cretaceous oceanic basalts within an accretionary complex in the eastern Argolis Peninsula extends the history of the Neotethys beyond Late Jurassic ophiolite emplacement, previously believed to be the result of continental collision. The Cretaceous ocean basins were relict Jurassic features, as no rifting event is known which can account for their formation following ophiolite obduction. After a phase of Late Cretaceous oceanic spreading in the eastern Vardar oceanic basin, Early Tertiary collision occurred as a result of northeast-dipping subduction along the eastern margins of both Pindos and Vardar branches of the Neotethys. Two distinct nappe emplacement vectors are identified in the Argolis Peninsula. After accounting for Neotectonic rotations these are interpreted to reflect SW-directed orthogonal collision in the west and NW-directed emplacement in the east, resulting from tranpressional collision along the southern end of the Pelagonian block. © 1992 Ferdinand Enke Verlag Stuttgart.

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Geologische Rundschau

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