Letter | Published:

Age of the Cambrian System

Naturevolume 187pages10201021 (1960) | Download Citation



RECENT contributions by Wetherill1 and Holmes2 lay stress upon studies of the brannerite (so-called ‘absite’) from Crocker Well, South Australia, as affording critical evidence on the age of the base of the Cambrian System, but dispute the interpretation of the various results (in the range 520–915 million years) arrived at in dating this mineral. The publication of this discussion prompts me to report why these data from South Australia were ignored, as being irrelevant, in my own notes on the geological time-scale3. My conclusions were arrived at in the light of a first-hand knowledge of the Australian deposits, which I visited some years ago, and arose from the following considerations.

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  1. 1

    Wetherill, G. W., Nature, 187, 34 (1960).

  2. 2

    Holmes, A., Trans. Edin. Geol. Soc., 17, 183 (1960) ; Nature, 187, 35 (1960).

  3. 3

    Davidson, C. F., Liverpool and Manchester Geol. J., 2, 311 (1960) ; Nature, 183, 768 (1959).

  4. 4

    Campana, B., and King, D., “Regional Geology and Mineral Resources of the Olary Province” (Dept. of Mines, Adelaide, 1958).

  5. 5

    Greenhalgh, D., and Jeffery, P. M., Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta, 16, 39 (1959).

  6. 6

    Davidson, C. F., Econ. Geol., 55, 383 (1960).

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  1. Department of Geology, University of St. Andrews

    • C. F. DAVIDSON


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