Trace element geochemistry of coesite-bearing eclogites from the Roberts Victor kimberlite, Kaapvaal craton

D. E. Jacob*, B. Schmickler, D. J. Schulze

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Citations (Scopus)


Trace element characteristics of seven coesite-bearing eclogitic xenoliths from the Roberts Victor kimberlite demonstrate that this suite of eclogites originated as gabbroic cumulates in oceanic crust that was subsequently subducted. All but one of the garnets show positive Eu anomalies, accompanied by a flat heavy rare earth pattern, which is atypical of garnet, but characteristic of plagioclase, arguing for a considerable amount of plagioclase in the protoliths. Forward modelling of the accumulation of liquidus minerals from primitive komatiitic, picritic, and basaltic liquids suggests that at least some of the eclogite protoliths were not derived from basaltic parental liquids, whereas derivation from either komatiitic or picritic liquids is possible. The reconstructed eclogite bulk rocks compare favourably with oceanic gabbros from ODP hole 735B (SW Indian Ridge), even to the extent that oxygen isotopic systematics show signs of low-temperature seawater alteration. However, the oxygen isotope trends are the reverse of what is expected for cumulates in the lower section of the oceanic crust. These new findings show that δ18O values in eclogitic xenoliths, despite being sound indicators for their interaction with hydrothermal fluids at low pressure, do not necessarily bear a simple relationship with the inferred oceanic crustal stratigraphy of the protoliths.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)337-351
Number of pages15
Issue number2-4
Publication statusPublished - 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Archean ocean crust
  • Coesite
  • Cumulates
  • Eclogite xenoliths
  • Roberts Victor
  • Trace elements


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