Mineralogy and Petrology

, Volume 112, Supplement 1, pp 311–323 | Cite as

Diamond brecciation and annealing accompanying major metasomatism in eclogite xenoliths from the Sask Craton, Canada

  • Janina CzasEmail author
  • Thomas Stachel
  • D. Graham Pearson
  • Richard A. Stern
  • George H. Read
Original Paper


We studied eclogite xenoliths (diamond-free n = 28; diamondiferous n = 22) from the Cretaceous Fort à la Corne Kimberlite Field in Western Canada for their major element, trace element and oxygen isotope compositions to assess their origin and metasomatic history, and possible relationships between metasomatism and diamond formation. All eclogites have major element and oxygen isotope compositions consistent with a derivation from different levels of subducted, seawater altered oceanic crust. While barren xenoliths are more likely to be of gabbroic origin, diamond-bearing samples commonly have signatures consistent with shallow basaltic protoliths. The mineral chemistry in bimineralic diamond-free eclogites spans a wide compositional range, yet it is typically homogenous within individual xenoliths. Temperatures calculated from Mg-Fe exchange between garnet and clinopyroxene range widely for these eclogites, from 740 to 1300 °C, indicating the presence of eclogite through most of the lithospheric mantle. Diamondiferous samples are restricted to high temperatures (1180–1390 °C), consistent with derivation from the zone of diamond stability. Compositionally, diamond-bearing eclogites span a broad range similar to their barren counterparts, but there is also heterogeneity in mineral chemistry on the intra-sample level and in particular garnets are characterised by strong internal chemical gradients. This intra-sample heterogeneity is interpreted as the result of intense melt metasomatism, which occurred in temporal proximity to host kimberlite magmatism, strongly affected major, trace and even oxygen isotope values and resulted in diamond brecciation and annealing.


Mantle metasomatism Oxygen isotope ratios Lithospheric mantle Garnet Subduction 



The authors would like to thank Star Diamond Corp. (formerly Shore Gold Inc.) for their kind sample donations. Andrew Locock and Yan Luo are thanked for their support during major and trace element analysis, respectively. Discussions with Pedro Waterton and Matt Hardman greatly improved the manuscript. We are grateful to the editor Jingao Liu, and the reviewers Gareth Davies and Gerhard Brey for their constructive reviews. Funding for this study was received from an NSERC (Discovery) grant to TS and a CERC grant to DGP. 11 IKC is thanked for providing a travel grant to JC to present this study at the Kimberlite Conference in Botswana.

Supplementary material

710_2018_590_MOESM1_ESM.docx (5.5 mb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 5607 kb)
710_2018_590_MOESM2_ESM.xls (291 kb)
ESM 2 (XLS 291 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Earth and Atmospheric SciencesUniversity of AlbertaEdmontonCanada
  2. 2.Star Diamond Corp. (formerly Shore Gold Inc.)SaskatoonCanada

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