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Kynance Sunset

Kynance Sunset

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Kynance Sunset - photographic print by Alex Rowbotham

Kynance and other nearby beaches and coves have serpentine rock formations. The rocks of green and red serpentine, polished by the sea over thousands of years are distinctive to Kynance Cove and the Lizard Peninsula.
The serpentinites are actually the metamorphosed and deformed remains of the upper layers of the mantle. The metamorphosis has in most cases taken the form of ductile deformation and serpentinization. Pre-deformation they would have been in the form of lherzolite peridotite and depleted harzburgite mantle.

The boundary between these two types of serpentinite can be studied at Kynance Cove, and geologically represents the boundary between shallow mantle peridotites from which material has been extracted by melting and deeper peridotite from which no material has been removed.

This image has been used in a museum installation to help illustrate the atmosphere of the Jurassic period.

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