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Wolf Rock, Cornwall, England, UK

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 49° 56' 43'' North , 5° 48' 29'' West
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): 49.94528,-5.80833
GeoHash:G#: gbgu5u682
UK National Grid Reference:SW269121
Locality type:Island
Age:131 Ma
Geologic Time:Early Cretaceous
Dating method:K-Ar (mean of 9 samples)
Reference for age:Geological Magazine, 114(4), 249-264.

A small rock in the sea, 9 miles south-west of Land's End and the site of the eponymous Wolf Rock lighthouse. It is the only occurrence of a true phonolite (Na and K-rich volcanic rock) in the British Isles. The Wolf Rock nosean phonolite consists of phenocrysts of nosean, sanidine and nepheline in a groundmass of sanadine, small euhedral crystals of nepheline and prisms of aegerine.

Note that Wolf Rock is in unparished area.

Select Mineral List Type

Standard Detailed Strunz Dana Chemical Elements

Mineral List

6 valid minerals.

Rock Types Recorded

Note: this is a very new system on mindat.org and data is currently VERY limited. Please bear with us while we work towards adding this information!

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Alphabetical List Tree Diagram

Detailed Mineral List:

Formula: NaFe3+Si2O6
Reference: Goley, P. and Williams R. (1995) Cornish Mineral Reference Manual. Endsleigh Publications
Formula: (Na,Ca,☐)8(Al6Si6O24)(CO3,SO4)2 · 2H2O
Reference: Goley, P. and Williams R. (1995) Cornish Mineral Reference Manual. Endsleigh Publications
Formula: (Na,K)3(Ca,Na)(Al3Si3O12)(SO4,S,Cl)
Reference: Goley, P. and Williams R. (1995) Cornish Mineral Reference Manual. Endsleigh Publications
Formula: Na3K(Al4Si4O16)
Reference: [Golley & Williams, 1995, 44 - "Cornish Mineral Reference Manual"]
Formula: Na8(Al6Si6O24)(SO4) · H2O
Reference: Goley, P. and Williams R. (1995) Cornish Mineral Reference Manual. Endsleigh Publications
Reference: Geological Magazine, 114(4), 249-264.
Formula: K(AlSi3O8)
Reference: Goley, P. and Williams R. (1995) Cornish Mineral Reference Manual. Endsleigh Publications

List of minerals arranged by Strunz 10th Edition classification

Group 9 - Silicates
'Cancrinite'9.FB.05(Na,Ca,☐)8(Al6Si6O24)(CO3,SO4)2 · 2H2O
'Nosean'9.FB.10Na8(Al6Si6O24)(SO4) · H2O
Unclassified Minerals, Rocks, etc.

List of minerals arranged by Dana 8th Edition classification

Group 65 - INOSILICATES Single-Width,Unbranched Chains,(W=1)
Single-Width Unbranched Chains, W=1 with chains P=2
Group 76 - TECTOSILICATES Al-Si Framework
Al-Si Framework with Al-Si frameworks
Al-Si Framework Feldspathoids and related species
Cancrinite76.2.5.3(Na,Ca,☐)8(Al6Si6O24)(CO3,SO4)2 · 2H2O
Nosean76.2.3.2Na8(Al6Si6O24)(SO4) · H2O
Unclassified Minerals, Rocks, etc.

List of minerals for each chemical element

H Cancrinite(Na,Ca,☐)8(Al6Si6O24)(CO3,SO4)2 · 2H2O
H NoseanNa8(Al6Si6O24)(SO4) · H2O
C Cancrinite(Na,Ca,☐)8(Al6Si6O24)(CO3,SO4)2 · 2H2O
O AegirineNaFe3+Si2O6
O Cancrinite(Na,Ca,☐)8(Al6Si6O24)(CO3,SO4)2 · 2H2O
O Haüyne(Na,K)3(Ca,Na)(Al3Si3O12)(SO4,S,Cl)
O NephelineNa3K(Al4Si4O16)
O NoseanNa8(Al6Si6O24)(SO4) · H2O
O SanidineK(AlSi3O8)
Na AegirineNaFe3+Si2O6
Na Cancrinite(Na,Ca,☐)8(Al6Si6O24)(CO3,SO4)2 · 2H2O
Na Haüyne(Na,K)3(Ca,Na)(Al3Si3O12)(SO4,S,Cl)
Na NephelineNa3K(Al4Si4O16)
Na NoseanNa8(Al6Si6O24)(SO4) · H2O
Al Cancrinite(Na,Ca,☐)8(Al6Si6O24)(CO3,SO4)2 · 2H2O
Al Haüyne(Na,K)3(Ca,Na)(Al3Si3O12)(SO4,S,Cl)
Al NephelineNa3K(Al4Si4O16)
Al NoseanNa8(Al6Si6O24)(SO4) · H2O
Al SanidineK(AlSi3O8)
Si AegirineNaFe3+Si2O6
Si Cancrinite(Na,Ca,☐)8(Al6Si6O24)(CO3,SO4)2 · 2H2O
Si Haüyne(Na,K)3(Ca,Na)(Al3Si3O12)(SO4,S,Cl)
Si NephelineNa3K(Al4Si4O16)
Si NoseanNa8(Al6Si6O24)(SO4) · H2O
Si SanidineK(AlSi3O8)
S Cancrinite(Na,Ca,☐)8(Al6Si6O24)(CO3,SO4)2 · 2H2O
S Haüyne(Na,K)3(Ca,Na)(Al3Si3O12)(SO4,S,Cl)
S NoseanNa8(Al6Si6O24)(SO4) · H2O
Cl Haüyne(Na,K)3(Ca,Na)(Al3Si3O12)(SO4,S,Cl)
K Haüyne(Na,K)3(Ca,Na)(Al3Si3O12)(SO4,S,Cl)
K NephelineNa3K(Al4Si4O16)
K SanidineK(AlSi3O8)
Ca Cancrinite(Na,Ca,☐)8(Al6Si6O24)(CO3,SO4)2 · 2H2O
Ca Haüyne(Na,K)3(Ca,Na)(Al3Si3O12)(SO4,S,Cl)
Fe AegirineNaFe3+Si2O6


Mineralization age: Early Cretaceous : 131 Ma

Important note: This table is based only on rock and mineral ages recorded below and is not necessarily a complete representation of the geochronology, but does give an indication of possible mineralization events relevant to this locality. As more age information is added this table may expand in the future. A break in the table simply indicates a lack of data entered here, not necessarily a break in the geologic sequence. Grey background entries are from different, related, localities.

Geologic TimeRocks, Minerals and Events
   Early Cretaceous
ⓘ Phonolite131 Ma
ⓘ Major polymetallic mineralization~270 MaCornwall, England, UK
ⓘ Porphyry dikes intruded (latest age)~275 MaCornwall, England, UK
ⓘ Greisenization (latest age)~280 MaCornwall, England, UK
ⓘ Porphyry dikes intruded (earliest age)~280 MaCornwall, England, UK
ⓘ Formation of metallized pegmatites~285 MaCornwall, England, UK
ⓘ Greisenization (earliest age)~285 MaCornwall, England, UK
ⓘ Emplacement of major plutons~295 MaCornwall, England, UK


Sort by

Year (asc) Year (desc) Author (A-Z) Author (Z-A)
Tilley, C. E. (1959). A note on the nosean phonolite of the Wolf Rock, Cornwall. Geological Magazine, 96(6), 503-504.
Mitchell, J. G., Macintyre, R. M., & Pringle, I. R. (1975). K–Ar and Rb–Sr isotopic age studies on the Wolf Rock nosean phonolite, Cornwall. Geological Magazine, 112(1), 55-61.
Harrison, R. K., Snelling, N. J., Merriman, R. J., Morgan, G. E., & Goode, A. J. J. (1977). The Wolf Rock, Cornwall: new chemical, isotopic age and palaeomagnetic data. Geological Magazine, 114(4), 249-264.

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