Two Mg-Al spinels (FAS1 and FAS2) in high-grade hornfels from the Toal de Mason skarn (Predazzo Monzoni, NE Italy) were investigated by means of single crystal X-ray diffraction and electron microprobe analysis in order to evaluate the last intra-crystalline closure temperature. The evidence provided by crystal chemical data from the investigated spinels, compared with that for two other spinels from a websterite dyke and a chlorite schist (TS2 and SP78a, respectively) with similar chemical characteristics, yielded a new empirical geothermometer. This allowed estimation of intra-crystalline temperatures as low as c. 400 degrees C and indicates that the closure temperature of FAS1 and FAS2 is c. 500 degrees C, i.e. 150-200 degrees C lower than the spinel crystallisation temperature.

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