Late Miocene volcanic rocks host the Sari Gunay epithermal gold deposit in NW Iran. These rocks are located within the Hamedan–Tabriz volcanic belt and occupy the northwestern part of the Sanandaj–Sirjan zone (SaSZ). The volcanic rocks span in composition from latite to dacite and rhyolite. Plagioclase, hornblende, biotite and quartz are the main phenocrysts in a fine-grained and glassy matrix. Laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry zircon U–Pb dating yielded crystallization ages of 10.10 ± 0.01 Ma and 11.18 ± 0.14 Ma for rhyolite and dacite, respectively. High ratios of Sr/Y (> 20) and La/Yb (> 20), high contents of Sr (≥ 400 ppm), low contents of MgO (≤ 6 wt%), Y ≤ 18 ppm (c. 16.5 ppm), Yb ≤ 1.9 ppm (c. 1.53 ppm) and weak negative Eu anomalies (Eu*/Eu c. 0.81) are compatible with a high-silica adakitic signature of the rocks. Regarding the location of the study area nearly 100 km from the Zagros suture zone, we argue that delamination of lithospheric mantle beneath the SaSZ has played a key role in the development of the adakitic rocks in a post-collision tectonic regime. The adakitic melts are suggested to have formed by partial melting of delaminated continental lithosphere and/or lower crustal amphibolite following the collision of the Arabian and Iranian plates.

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