Cordierite in Felsic Igneous Rocks: A Synthesis

D. B. Clarke
Department of Earth Sciences, Dalhousie University, Halifax, N.S., Canada B3H 3J5

Abstract: Cordierite is a characteristic mineral of many peraluminous felsic igneous rocks. A combination of T-P-X parameters, which overlap the stability conditions for felsic magmas, control its formation. Critical among these parameters are relatively low T, low P, and typically high (Mg+Fe2+), Mg/Fe2+, A/CNK, aAl2O3, and fO2. Spatial and textural information indicate that cordierite may originate in one of three principal ways in felsic igneous rocks: Type 1 Metamorphic: (a) xenocrystic (generally anhedral, many inclusions, spatial proximity to country rocks and pelitic xenoliths); (b) restitic (generally anhedral, high-grade metamorphic inclusions); Type 2 Magmatic: (a,b) peritectic (subhedral to euhedral, associated with leucosomes in migmatites or as reaction rims on garnet); (c) cotectic (euhedral, grain size compatibility with host rock, few inclusions); (d) pegmatitic (large subhedral to euhedral grains, associated with aplite-pegmatite contacts or pegmatitic portion alone); and Type 3 Metasomatic (spatially related to structural discontinuities in host, replacement of feldspar and/or biotite, intergrowths with quartz). Of these, Type 2a (peritectic) and Type 2c (cotectic) predominate in granitic and rhyolitic rocks derived from fluid-undersaturated peraluminous magmas, and Type 2d (pegmatitic) may be the most common type in fluid-saturated systems.

Keywords: cordierite • pinite • granite • aplite • pegmatite • rhyolite • migmatite • restite • xenocryst • metamorphic • magmatic • metasomatic

Mineralogical Magazine; June 1995 v. 59; no. 395; p. 311-325; DOI: 10.1180/minmag.1995.059.395.15
© 1995, The Mineralogical Society
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