Rhenium-depletion model ages (TRD) of sulfides in peridotite xenoliths from the subcontinental mantle beneath central Spain (the Calatrava volcanic field) reveal that episodes of mantle magmatism and/or metasomatism in the Iberia microplate were linked to crustal growth events, mainly during supercontinent assembly and/or breakup at ca. 1.8, 1.1, 0.9, 0.6, and 0.3 Ga. A synthesis of available in situ and whole-rock Os-isotope data on mantle-derived peridotites shows that this type of mantle (maximum TRD of ca. 1.8 Ga) is widespread in the subcontinental mantle of Europe and Africa outboard from the Betics-Maghrebides-Appenines front. In contrast, the mantle enclosed within the Alpine domain records TRD as old as 2.6 Ga, revealing a previously unrecognized Archean domain or domains in the central and western Mediterranean. Our observations indicate that ancient fragments of subcontinental lithospheric mantle have played an important role in the development of the present architecture of the Mediterranean lithosphere.

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