STRATI 2013 pp 95-98 | Cite as

The Bartonian (Middle Eocene) GSSP: Historical Considerations and Challenges

  • Richard H. FluegemanEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Springer Geology book series (SPRINGERGEOL)


The Bartonian Stage is one of the standard stages of the Eocene. It has a complex history of usage dating from the mid-nineteenth century. In defining its GSSP, the Bartonian Working Group plans to honour the historical concept of the Bartonian Stage as originally identified in the Hampshire Basin, and will select a definition that does not truncate the “unit stratotype” of the Bartonian Stage. The Working Group recognizes that the lithostratigraphic concept of the Barton Clay Formation differs from the chronostratigraphic concept of the Bartonian Stage. It is proposed that the Nummulites prestwichianus bed in the Hampshire Basin be used to define the base of the historical Bartonian Stage in that region. Previously proposed guide events for the Bartonian Stage that both honour this definition and which may serve to define a GSSP include either the base or the top of magnetochron C19n, the first occurrence of planktonic foraminiferan Turborotalia cerroazulensis, and the last occurrence of the planktonic foraminiferan Guembelitrioides nuttalli. Additionally, the lowest occurrence of the calcareous nannofossil Reticulofenestra reticulata is a widely recognized biolevel that correlates closely with the base of C19n. Ongoing biostratigraphic and magnetostratigraphic work on sections in Spain and Italy will likely produce a GSSP for the Bartonian Stage.


Eocene Bartonian GSSP Hampshire Basin Magnetostratigraphy Biostratigraphy 


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Geological SciencesBall State UniversityMuncieUSA

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