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Monte Argentario, Grosseto Province, Tuscany, Italy

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Location is approximate, based on center of defined region.
Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 42° North , 11° East (est.)
Name(s) in local language(s):Monte Argentario, Provincia di Grosseto, Toscana, Italia

Monte Argentario is a municipality and a peninsula (promontory), located about 35 kilometres SSE of Grosseto. The municipal territories of Monte Argentario includes also three islets lying off the cost of the promontory: Isola Argentarola, Isola Rossa, and Isolotto di Porto Ercole.

The promontory, jutting out into the Tyrrhenian Sea, stretches towards the two southernmost islands of the Tuscan Archipelago, Giglio and Giannutri. Monte Argentario was an island in the past, but the sea currents and the Albegna River joined it with the mainland through two so-called tombolos (narrow pieces of land), the Tombolo of Giannella and the Tombolo of Feniglia, which formed the Orbetello Lagoon. The highest point of the peninsula is Punta Telegrafo (635 m a.s.l.).

From a geological and mineralogical point of view there are significant differences between the the east-central and the western part of the promontory.

The central and eastern part of the Monte Argentario Promontory mainly consists of rocks belonging to two geological units, Tuscan Verrucano (Mid-Triassic metamorphosed continental clastic rocks) and Calcare Cavernoso (essentially a “pitted” calcarous rock of grey colour), with minor occurrences of Palaeozoic metasediments.

The western part of the promontory forms a tectonic melange (having affinity with the tectonic pile of the Franco Promontory on the Island of Giglio) comprising a large variety of rock types, many of which are not found further east. The Triassic sequence is represented by psammopelitic Verrucano, dolomitic marble (“grezzoni”) and gypsum ("Burano Anhydrite"). In addition, abundant Triassic calcite marble is present (the marble sequence has been given the local name “Cala Piatti unit”). Interlayered calcareous beds and phyllites are considered as being transitional in facies between pelitic Verrucano and the calcite marble unit. A strongly fragmented ophiolite unit forms a substantial part of the western Argentario melange. Rock types of this unit include ultramafic rocks (mainly serpentinite, locally talc-tremolite rock and pyroxenite), metagabbro, metabasalt, and metasedimentary rocks of oceanic provenance. Furthermore, there are minor occurrences of metasedimentary rocks (siliceous-calcareous rocks, greywacke, etc.).

Verrucano rocks contain low-grade metamorphic minerals such as pyrophyllite, sudoite, chloritoid, and Fe-Mg-carpholite (Theye et al., 1997; Jolivet et al., 1998). These minerals have been used to characterise metamorphism and constrain P-T paths. The discovery of ferro- and magnesiocarpholite (XMg = Mg/(Mg+Mn+Fe2+) = 0.36 - 0.70) demonstrated that the Verrucano sequence of the east-central Monte Argentario had experienced HP-LT conditions similar to those derived from metabasites in the west (Theye et al., 1997).

Mineral List

Mineral list contains entries from the region specified including sub-localities

51 valid minerals.

Localities in this Region

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- Santi G. (1798): Viaggio secondo per le due province senesi. Ranieri Prosperi Stamp., Pisa, 451 pp.
- Brocchi G.B. (1818): Osservazioni naturali fatte nel promontorio Argentario e isola del Giglio. Bibl. Ital.- Giorn. Lett. Sc. Arti, 11, 76-93, 237-253, 356-369.
- Jervis G. (1874): I tesori sotterranei dell'Italia. Vol. 2: Regione dell’Appennino e vulcani attivi e spenti dipendentivi. Ed. Loescher, Torino, 624 pp.
- Jervis G. (1881): I tesori sotterranei dell'Italia. Vol. 3: Regioni delle Isole. Sardegna e Sicilia. Addenda ai precedenti volumi. Loescher, Torino, XXII+539 pp.
- Lotti B. (1883): Appunti di osservazioni geologiche nel promontorio Argentario, nell’isola del Giglio e nell’isola di Gorgona. Boll. R. Comitato Geol. d'Italia, 4, 5-6, 109-128.
- Lotti B. (1928): I depositi dei minerali metalliferi. Guida allo studio e alla ricerca dei giacimenti metalliferi con speciali esemplificazioni di giacimenti italiani. Seconda Edizione. Edizioni de “L’Industria Mineraria”, Stab. Tipografico A. Porcile, Genova, 236 pp.
- Gottardi G. (1957): Su alcune rocce metamorfiche del Monte Argentario. Atti Soc. Tosc. Sci. Nat., Memorie, Serie A, 64, 88-119.
- Lazzarotto A., Mazzanti R., Mazzoncini F. (1964): Geologia del Promontorio Argentario (Grosseto) e del Promontorio del Franco (Isola del Giglio - Grosseto). Boll. Soc. Geol. Ital., 83, 2, 1-124.
- Ricci C.A. (1972): Geo-petrological features of the metamorphic formations of Tuscany. Atti Soc. Tosc. Sci. Nat., Memorie, Serie A, 79, 267-279.
- Del Caldo A., Moro C., Gramaccioli C.M., Boscardin M. (1973): Guida ai minerali. Fratelli Fabbri Editori, Milano, 208 pp.
- Azzaro E., Caravani L., Di Sabatino B., Negretti G. (1977): Aspetti petrologici delle rocce verdi del Promontorio Argentario (Toscana). Rend. Soc. Ital. Miner. Petrol., 33, 689-698.
- Decandia F.A., Lazzarotto A. (1980): Le unità tettoniche del Monte Argentario (Toscana meridionale). In: L’evoluzione tettonico-sedimentaria dell’Appennino settentrionale. 70° Congresso della Società Geologica Italiana, Siena, 6-11 ottobre 1980. Libretto guida, pages
- Masi U., Tucci P. (1993): Geochemical features of the "Calcare Cavernoso" from the Monte Argentario area (Southern Tuscany) and genetic implications. Geologica Romana, 29, 155-161.
- Theye T., Reinhardt J., Goffé B., Jolivet L., Brunet C. (1997): Ferro- and magnesiocarpholite from the Monte Argentario (Italy): First evidence for high-pressure metamorphism of the metasedimentary Verrucano sequence, and significance for P-T path reconstruction. European Journal of Mineralogy, 9, 859-873.
- Jolivet L., Faccenna C., Goffè B., Mattei M., Rossetti F., Brunet Ch., Storti F., Funiciello R., Cadet J.P., D’Agostino N., Parra T. (1998): Mid-crustal shear zones in post-orogenic extension: example from the Northern Tyrrhenian sea. J. Geoph. Res., 103, B6, 123-160.
- Elter M.F, Pandeli E. (2001): 3 - Southern Tuscany - A - Argentario Promontory. Ofioliti, 26, 2a, 357-360.
- Fuchs Y., Mellini M., Memmi I. (2001): Crystal-chemistry of magnesiocarpholite: controversial X-ray diffraction, Mössbauer, FTIR and Raman results. European Journal of Mineralogy, 13, 533–543.
- Reinhardt J., Rossetti F. (2004): Monte Argentario and Isola del Giglio (Southern Tuscany, Italy): a record from continental break-up to subduction, orogenic wedge formation, and post-orogenic extension. 32nd International Geological Congress (IGC), Florence, August 20-28, 2004. Post-Congress P61. Field Trip Guide Book - P61, 19 pp.
- Biagioni C., Cerri M., Bernocchi M., Betti C., Del Ghiaro L., Mangoni G., Bazzoni C. (2016): Monte Argentario. I minerali del giacimento ferro-manganesifero. Riv. Mineral. Ital., 40, 1 (1-2016), 8-20.

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