In this petrographic and geochemical study, we differentiated diverse quartz botryoids, including circular-concentric, twinned, columnar, wavy, and stromatolite-like structures versus synchronous biotic patterns of similar geometry and size dimensions (filamentous traits and stromatolites) in Precambrian cherts of Barberton, South Africa, and Gunflint, Canada. The botryoidal habits explored retained self-similar patterns of radially aligned acicular quartz with concentric laminae, which are not documented in biologically built stromatolites. These ancient fractals and their composition imitate those in chemically oscillating reactions, implying that the precipitation of botryoids was fueled by abiotic diagenetic degradation of organic matter and subsequently metamorphosed into chert.

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