Abstract

Abundant volcanic blocks are present in the Dunnage mélange. These mafic volcanic rocks consist predominantly of pillow lava, tuff breccia, isolated pillow–tuff breccia, and minor amounts of ropy lava.Major- and trace-element compositions of the basalts reveal that these volcanics do not resemble calc-alkaline or low-potassium island-arc suites. Rather, the majority of the samples are enriched-type ocean-floor tholeiites, whereas some show alkali basalt affinities. Discrimination diagrams suggest that these basalts may have been erupted as within-plate basalts. However, the chemical composition of the volcanic blocks is most similar to that of basalts generated at bathymetric highs located astride (or slightly off) mid-ocean ridges.The geochemistry of the Dunnage mélange basalts is very similar to that of the mafic volcanic rocks from the nearby Summerford Group and the Lawrence Head Formation. This correlation is further supported by sedimentary and petrographic evidence and by partial age equivalency.

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