Go my Sons, buy stout shoes, climb the mountains, search the valleys, the deserts, the sea shores, and the deep recesses of the earth. Look for the various kinds of minerals, note their characters and mark their origin ... observe and experiment without ceasing, for in this way and in no other will you arrive at a knowledge of the nature and properties of things.(Wallerius, Systema Mineralogicum, Preface, Vienna, 1778) (Adams 1954, p. 210).Once out ofnature I shall never takeMy bodily form from any natural thing,But such a form as Grecian goldsmiths makeOf hammered gold and gold enamellingTo keep a drowsy Emperor awake;Or set upon a golden bough to sing To lords and ladies of ByzantiumOf what is past, or passing, or to come.(W.B. Yeats, from Sailing to Byzantium)
Central Europe is a complex mosaic of crustal elements, including Cadomian fragments, Caledonian and Variscan microcontinents and suture zones, as well as Mesozoic and Alpine tectonostratigraphic successions (Fig. 1.1). These disparate elements were assembled during the various Precambrian and Phanerozoic (Caledonian, Variscan and Alpine) orogenies, the end result being a geological history of over 3500 million years. Over this long and complex period of crustal evolution, older consolidated crustal elements were repeatedly remobilized and overprinted by later events.
Rather than a physical entity, the term ‘Central Europe’ is more a concept of shared history, and in some ways refers to a similar area to that which is defined by the German term ‘Mitteleuropa’ (or Middle Europe), referring to territories under
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The Geology of Central Europe: Volume 1: Precambrian and Palaeozoic
This two-volume set provides the first comprehensive account in English of the geology of Central Europe. Written by more than 200 scientists from universities and research centres spread across Europe and North America, the 21 chapters are based on the main stratigraphic periods. Individual chapters outline the evolution of the region divided into a variety of sections which include overviews of the stratigraphic framework, climate, sea-level variations, palaeogeography and magmatic activity. These are followed by more detailed descriptions of the Central European succession, covering the main basins and magmatic provinces. Each chapter is thoroughly referenced, providing a unique and valuable information source.
Volume 1 focuses on the evolution of Central Europe from the Precambrian to the Permian, a dynamic period which traces the formation of Central Europe from a series of microcontinents that separated from Gondwana through to the creation of Pangaea. Separate summary chapters on the Cadomian, Caledonian and Variscan orogenic events as well as on Palaeozoic magmatism provide an overview of the tectonic and magmatic evolution of the region. These descriptions sometimes extend beyond the borders of Central Europe to take in the Scottish and Irish Caledonides as well as the Palaeozoic successions in the Baltic region.
Volume 2 provides an overview of the Mesozoic and Cenozoic evolution of Central Europe. This period commenced with the destruction of Pangaea and ended with the formation of the Alps and Carpathians and the subsequent Ice Ages. Separate summary chapters on the Permian to Cretaceous tectonics and the Alpine evolution are also included. The final chapter provides an overview of the fossil fuels, ore and industrial minerals in the region.
The Geology of Central Europe is a key reference work suitable not only for libraries across the world, but of interest to all researchers, teachers and students of European Geology.