Original Paper

Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology

, Volume 164, Issue 4, pp 693-696

First online:

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

Chemical characteristics (REE, etc.) of Paleozoic and Mesozoic graywackes and sandstones from Central Europe

  • Karl Hans WedepohlAffiliated with
  • , Klaus SimonAffiliated with Email author 


During the Variscan orogeny in Central Europe, partial melting in the lower continental crust formed granitic magmas, which intruded into the upper crust and left compounds of Ca (plus Eu2+), Mg, etc. in the lower crust. From the late Paleozoic decomposition of the tonalitic upper crust, sedimentary graywackes were produced reflecting the composition of this crust. The repeated reworking of the sedimentary cover caused the formation of sands. Sandstones as their products of consolidation contain increasing fractions of quartz and decreasing feldspar from Carboniferous and Triassic to Cretaceous age. A distinct negative Eu anomaly characterizes the majority of these rocks. The latter is imprinted by the Variscan magmatism. Quartz as used for numerous Medieval wood ash glasses is marked for its Central European origin by a distinct negative Eu anomaly in contrast to many soda glasses produced outside Germany mostly with a small or none Eu anomaly.


Graywackes Sandstones Quartz Rare earth elements Medieval glass