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The eastern Great Smoky Mountains basement complex consists of the following components: (1) ca. 1350–1325 Ma orthogneiss and mafic xenoliths that represent some of the oldest crust in Appalachian Grenville massifs (similar to “pre-Grenville” basement components in the Adirondack, Green Mountain, Hudson Highland, and Shenandoah massifs); (2) ca. 1150 Ma augen orthogneisses and granitic orthogneisses correlating with the Shawinigan phase of Grenville magmatism; and (3) paragneisses (cover rocks) that have either pre- or syn-Grenville (i.e., Mesoproterozoic) versus post-Grenville (Neoproterozoic) depositional ages, and that experienced Taconian metamorphism and migmatization. Mesoproterozoic paragneisses contain major zircon age modes that require a component...

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