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We report new petrological data for granulites from the Central Zone of the Limpopo Complex, southern Africa, and construct a prograde P-T path that traverses from high-pressure granulite-facies metamorphism to peak ultrahigh-temperature (UHT) metamorphism by rapid decompression, which was followed by further decompression and cooling. Mg-rich (X Mg ~0.58) staurolite enclosed within poikiloblastic garnet in an Mg-Al-rich rock from the Beit Bridge area is rarely mantled by a sapphirine + quartz corona, suggesting the progress of the prograde dehydration reaction: staurolite + garnet → sapphirine + quartz + H2O. The symplectic sapphirine + quartz developed around staurolite probably implies decompression from P >14 kbar toward the stability of sapphirine + quartz at T ~1000 °C along a clockwise P-T path. The orthopyroxene + sillimanite + quartz assemblage mantled by cordierite aggregates in a pelitic granulite from the same area also suggests extreme metamorphism and subsequent further decompression. Various corona textures such as kyanite + sapphirine, sapphirine + cordierite, and orthopyroxene + cordierite were probably formed as a result of decompression cooling events. The prograde high-pressure metamorphism and the following UHT event relate to the collisional tectonics of the Zimbabwe and Kaapvaal Cratons, which are associated with the amalgamation of microcontinents during the Neoarchean.

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