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Geology Guide

Series: Classic Geology in Europe Volume: 7

By: Stephen Edwards

271 pages, Figs, maps

Terra Publishing

Paperback | Jan 2010 | #136449 | ISBN-13: 9781903544150
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NHBS Price: £18.95 $23/€21 approx

About this book

The island of Cyprus is a truly classic area of geology in Europe. Perhaps nowhere else on Earth does so small an area provide such an excellent illustration of the dynamics of Earth processes through abundant exposures of spectacular and diverse geology. This superb and accessible natural laboratory records at least 200 million years of plate-tectonic activity, particularly the construction, destruction and uplift of parts of the sea floor.

The Troodos massif provides a complete cross section through the upper mantle and crust of a former ocean basin. A journey through the Troodos brings to life the processes of seafloor spreading, transform faulting, magma migration and crystallization, mineralization and submarine hot spring activity. Elsewhere, in the southwestern part of the island, the colourful jumble of rocks records the breakup of a former continental margin as a consequence of plate collision.

Resting on top of all of this are excellent sedimentary sequences that record changes in tectonic activity, uplift of the Troodos massif, formation of depositional basins and changes in sea level. The fascinating story does not end here. The geology, natural resources and climate of Cyprus have enabled civilizations to flourish, and world-renowned archaeological sites date as far back as the Neolithic period. Much of the wealth and development of the island has been based on copper, and evidence of its exploitation dates to at least the third millennium BC.

Cyprus is also a hazardous island. Modern and ancient settlements have been destroyed or abandoned as a consequence of earthquakes and landslides, the evidence for which is clearly visible in the landscape and ruins. Like its companions in the "Classic Geology in Europe" series, this authoritative work will appeal to all those with an interest in geology who visit this exceptional Mediterranean destination.


Preface; Acknowledgements; Introduction; Cyprus: an island of outstanding geology and history; Using the guide; Orientation and getting around; Field health, safety and equipment; Cyprus: environment and history; Location and size; Geological history; Landscape and topography; Climate and meteorology; Soils and agriculture; Flora and fauna; Human history; The Troodos ophiolite: lower section; Introduction; The mantle sequence; The plutonic sequence; The Troodos ophiolite: upper section; Introduction; The sheeted-dyke sequence; The volcanic sequence; Sulphide deposits and umber; The Troodos ophiolite: complex faulting; Introduction; The Arakapas Valley and Limassol Forest; The Mamonia terrane; Introduction; Mamonia rocks and contact relationships; The circum-Troodos sedimentary succession; Introduction; The Perapedhi Formation; Kannaviou, Moni and Kathikas Formations; The Lefkara Formation; The Pakhna Formation; Miocene uplift of the Limassol Forest; The Kalavasos Formation; Pliocene and Quaternary sedimentation; Resources, wastes and hazards; Introduction; The story of Cyprus copper; Industrial and construction materials; Hydrogeology and water resources; Waste and landfill; Geological hazards; Excursions; Introduction; The Troodos massif and adjacent areas; Southwest Cyprus; Southern Cyprus; Selected walks; Glossary; Further information and bibliography; Index of localities; Subject index.

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Stephen Edwards is a research fellow and the research and education development manager of the Aon Benfield UCL Hazard Research Centre at University College London. Karen Hudson-Edwards is a senior lecturer in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Birkbeck, University of London. Joe Cann is emeritus professor of Earth sciences at the University of Leeds. John Malpas is professor of geology and holder of the Chair of Earth Sciences at the University of Hong Kong. Costas Xenophontos is an honorary associate professor at the University of Hong Kong and retired senior geologist of the Cyprus Geological Survey Department.