Abstract

Gold-sulfide-tourmaline associations are characteristic of large gold resources worldwide. Such parageneses can rarely be dated; hence genetic models are based on weak age constraints. Stepwise Pb leaching enabled direct, precise dating of individual samples of hydrothermal pyrrhotite (1.93 ± 0.05 Ga) and paragenetically older tourmaline (2.02 ± 0.02 Ga) from a shear-zone–hosted gold mineralization within the Archean Zimbabwe craton. These ages reveal a multistage Proterozoic hydrothermal event within the craton. The presence of a scheelite-tourmaline ore dated at 2.65 ± 0.01 Ga within the same shear zone may point to an Archean precursor. Because of its capability to demonstrate Pb isotope (dis)equilibrium between associated phases, single-mineral Pb leaching also traces genetic processes.

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