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Evidence for a Caledonian orogeny in Poland

  • J. D. Johnston (a1), J. A. Tait (a2), G. J. H. Oliver (a3) and F. C. Murphy (a4)


The Lower Palaeozoic tectonic history of central and eastern Europe is poorly understood because of extensive Variscan and/or Alpine reworking. The trace of the Tornquist Sea, the SE arm of the Lower Palaeozoic Iapetus Ocean, extended from NE Britain to Asia Minor. The site of this ocean is constrained by the tectonostratigraphy and faunal provinciality of Lower Palaeozoic inliers in northern Czechoslovakia, and southern Poland. In this paper, the collage of contrasting tectonostratigraphic histories of terranes in the Lower Palaeozoic of Poland is reviewed. Fossil evidence demonstrates that the Holy Cross Mountains and the Krakovian Belt display Lower Ordovician and Lower Devonian angular unconformities. Faunal data suggest that the Tornquist Suture Zone must lie south of the Holy Cross and between Upper Silesia and the Barrandian of the Czech Republic. Between these areas, in the Sudeten Mountains, a continental scale sinistral mylonite zone (along the line of the Intra-Sudetic Fault) was periodically active between the Middle Ordovician and the Upper Triassic. Various dismembered ophiolite, island arc and batholith terranes from alongside the Intra-Sudetic Fault have Ordocivian and Silurian magmatic and metamorphic zircon isotopic and fossil ages. Thus the often stated view that deformation in the Sudetes is Variscan (i.e. post-Middle Devonian) must be called into question. It is proposed instead that the Tornquist Suture is located within the Sudeten mountains, and as in the Holy Cross Mountains, much of the observed deformation is post-Cambrian and pre-Gedinnian in age, i.e. Caledonian.



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Evidence for a Caledonian orogeny in Poland

  • J. D. Johnston (a1), J. A. Tait (a2), G. J. H. Oliver (a3) and F. C. Murphy (a4)


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