In 1967 Phillips retired to Wains Way, Butt's Lawn, Meerut Road, Brockenhurst, Hampshire. Apart from acting as an external examiner to King's College London, he now had the time to give another short course on structural petrology (on 21-22 March 1968), and to see his 1970 translation of Sander's book through to publication. Reviewers of this text were agreed that few geologists not unusually fluent in German would ever have read a significant proportion of the original (N. R. 1970; Weiss 1970; Johnson 1971; Ramsay 1971) and for this reason alone, the translation of the embodiment of the philosophy underlying Sander's (and Schmidt's) life work was desirable. The task of translation was made particularly difficult because of the combination of Sander's convoluted style, local dialectal terms, and new words not previously used elsewhere and not always used as initially defined. Phillips enlisted the help of George Windsor of the Department of German, Bristol University, to assist him with the onerous task. Several times Phillips almost gave up on the Herculean task of producing a text suitable for publication, and the book was probably only completed because of the personal urgings of Weiss, Paterson and others who encouraged him to persist (Weiss 1970). Phillips took the opportunity to add a second bibliography of 168 books and papers (covering the years 1950-1967) to update Sander's original.
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The Life of Frank Coles Phillips (1902–1982) and the Structural Geology of the Moine Petrofabric Controversy
Frank Coles Phillips was a photographer mineralogists and structural petrologists working in themiddle of the twentieth century. He was very influential, both in the UK and abroad and was responsible for encouraging the development of structural geology as a discipline in Australia and for the adoption of the stereogram as a fundamental interpretational tool in structural geology in the UK. He was a superb teacher, perhaps best known amongst mineralogist and geologist of today for his classic textbooks, An Introduction to Crystallography and The Use Steographic Projection in Structural Geology.
Phillips was the first to apply the methods of structural petrology (the study of the microscopic fabric of deformed rocks) in an attempt to unravel the complex structural history of the Moine rocks of northwestern Scotland. his findings were at odds with those of his contemporaries and resulted in the Moine petrofabrics becoming embroiled in a long-running controversy, only completely resolved since the mid-1980s.
This geological biography of an important twentieth century mineralogist and petrolohist takes a critical look at Philips' research in the context of contemporaneous developments in structural and Moine geology. It reviews his work in relation to both past problems and present solutions. It will be of interest to all gelogist, especially structural and microstructural geologist, historians of science and the general leader with an interest in science.