‘The Variscan Belt of Western Europe is part of a large Paleozoic mountain belt 1000 km wide and 8000 km long, that extended in Permian times from the Caucasus and Urals in Europe to the Appalachian and Ouachita mountains in America.’ So begins a contribution by Matte to this valuable new volume on Variscan geology, a product resulting from the 15th International Conference on Basement Tectonics held in Galicia in July 2000. Taking the broad view, Matte illustrates how different parts of the Variscan orogen developed in different ways. The central and western European Variscides and the Appalachian–Mauritanian segments provide...

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