Abstract

Within the Avalon composite terrane exposed in southern New Brunswick, late Precambrian, low-grade volcanic–sedimentary sequences are juxtaposed against late Precambrian gneisses (Brookville Gneiss) and older platformal metasedimentary rocks (Green Head Group) along the Caledonia Fault. Both assemblages host petrographically similar suites of calc-alkalic dioritic and granodioritic plutons. Those intruding volcanic–sedimentary sequences (Caledonia terrane) record ca. 615–625 Ma crystallization ages typical of arc-related magmatism throughout the Avalon composite terrane. However, 40Ar/39Ar age data from stocks intruding gneisses and platformal metasedimentary rocks (Brookville terrane) suggest significantly younger crystallization ages.36Ar/40Ar versus 39Ar/40Ar isotope correlation ages recorded by hornblende are interpreted to closely date postmagmatic cooling within six plutons: Fairville Granite (547 ± 1 Ma); French Village Quartz Diorite (539 ± 2 and 537 ± 1 Ma); Rockwood Park Granodiorite (529 ± 2 and 523 ± 3.5 Ma); Musquash Granite (526 ± 2 Ma); Milkish Head Granite (Red Bridge pluton, 520 ± 1.5 Ma); Lepreau Diorite (Talbot Road pluton, 519 ± 2 Ma and Hansen Stream pluton, 518 ± 1.5 Ma. A hornblende isotope correlation age of 530 ± 2 Ma from penetratively foliated amphibolite within the French Village Quartz Diorite suggests that the magmatic activity was locally accompanied by ductile shear. Muscovite within granitic pegmatite in the Brookville Gneiss records a 40Ar/39Ar plateau age of 510 ± 1 Ma interpreted to date final phases of associated magmatic activity.Arc-related magmatism extending into the Cambrian contrasts with the characteristic tectono-stratigraphic record in the Avalon composite terrane where late Precambrian igneous rocks are overstepped by Cambrian–Ordovician shallow-marine strata with only a local and minor record of rift-related volcanic activity. Although the Brookville terrane shows affinities with the Avalon composite terrane during the late Precambrian, the 40Ar/39Ar age data suggest that it was isolated as a distinct tectono-stratigraphic element by the Early Cambrian.

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