The Mg, Fe, and Al of a clinochlore were dissolved at the same rate in Si-saturated 2 N HCl at 60 degrees C indicating a nonpreferential removal of 'octahedral' and 'tetrahedral' cations and suggesting a dissolution process in which the hydroxide sheet and the 2:1 sheet in the chlorite layer were equally attacked. The chemical data also suggested that the acid attack on the chlorite particles proceeded from the edges inwards along a well-defined reaction boundary leaving a reacted layer which formed a diffusion barrier. The combined evidence from X-ray diffraction and thermal analyses confirmed the equal attack on the two component sheets in the chlorite layer and the progress of the reaction along a well-defined reaction boundary but did not support unequivocally the diffusion-controlled reaction rate suggested by the chemical data.

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