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We present apatite and zircon fission-track (AFT and ZFT) ages from the Amorgos detachment system in the Aegean Sea, Greece. The Amorgos detachment system consists of a basal and an upper detachment. The lower Amorgos detachment occupies the same tectonic position as the regionally important large-magnitude Cretan detachment and therefore can provide improved constraints on the evolution of the latter. AFT ages from the footwalls of both detachments show that detachment-related cooling occurred in the early Miocene, coeval with an important phase of cooling in the footwall of the Cretan detachment on Crete. We interpret the footwall AFT ages to indicate an early Miocene age of movement on the Amorgos detachments, essentially simultaneously with slip on the Cretan detachment. ZFT ages from rocks above the lower Amorgos detachment are not reset indicating that metamorphic temperatures during the Tertiary Hellenic orogeny did not exceed c. 300 °C significantly. We discuss a model in which top-to-the-north movement on the Cretan/Amorgos detachment commenced in the early Miocene. Soon after the inception of the Cretan/Amorgos detachment, top-to-the-south movement on the South Cyclades shear zone deformed the latter and brought the Amorgos detachment into a higher crustal position.

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