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Abstract

Most genetic theories concerning the Mississippi Valley type appeal to circulations of aqueous solutions, not only the classical hydrothermal theories but also the sedimentary theories which often call upon "re-mobilizations" of syngénetic deposits. Under these conditions it appears logical, in order to discriminate, to consider the possibilities of circulation during the formation of the deposits, i.e., to carry out a paleohydro-geological analysis of the mineralized zone and its surroundings.

Within the local setting of the deposit itself circulations are put forward by the analysis; they are possible owing to the permeability of the host rocks and they are evidenced by dissolution figures and by the epigenetic texture of the crystallizations. These circulations are posterior to the consolidation of the host rocks.

Then. taking into account the regional setting of the deposits the circuits liable to be involved are examined: circulations of meteoric and connate waters within one and the same horizon; circulations affecting the basement and locally ascending toward the emplacements of the deposits. This last hypothesis appears the most satisfactory from many points of view, especially as it demands a "constriction" of the circulation where the latter goes through certain structures such as faults and "paleinsules" obviously related to the deposits. which explains well the anomalous concentrations of the metals.

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