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A synthesis of published and new data is used to interpret the Sudetic segment of the Variscan belt as having formed by the accretion of four major and two or three minor terranes. From west to east the major terranes are (1) Lusatia-Izera Terrane, exposing Armorican continental basement reworked by Ordovician plutonism and Late Devonian-Carboniferous collision, showing Saxothuringian affinities; (2) composite Góry Sowie-Kłodzko Terrane characterized by multistage evolution (Silurian subduction, mid- to late Devonian collision, exhumation and extension, Carboniferous deformational overprint), with analogues elsewhere in the Bohemian Massif, Massif Central and Armorica; (3) Moldanubian (Gföhl) Terrane comprising the Orlica-Śnieżnik and Kamieniec massifs, affected by Early Carboniferous high-grade metamorphism and exhumation and (4) Brunovistulian Terrane in the East Sudetes, set up on Avalonian crust and affected by Devonian to late Carboniferous sedimentation, magmatism and tectonism. The main terranes are separated by two smaller ones squeezed along their boundaries: (1) Moravian Terrane, between the Moldanubian and Brunovistulian, deformed during Early Carboniferous collision, and (2) SE Karkonosze Terrane of affinities to the Saxothuringian oceanic realm, sandwiched betwen the Lusatia-Izera and Góry Sowie-Kłodzko (together with Teplá-Barrandian) terranes, subjected to high pressure-metamorphism and tectonized during Late Devonian-Early Carboniferous convergence. The Kaczawa Terrane in the NW, of oceanic accretionary prism features, metamorphosed and deformed during latest Devonian-Early Carboniferous times, may either be a distinct unit unrelated to closure of the Saxothuringian Ocean or represent a continuation of the SE Karkonosze Terrane.

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