Sedimentary strata on top of some laccolithic intrusions are nearly horizontal and little deformed, but are bent into steeply dipping monoclinal flexures over the peripheries of these intrusions. This form of bending is not explained by previous theories of laccolithic intrusion, which predict either horizontal undeformed strata over the center and faulted strata around the periphery, or strata bent continuously into a dome. However, a slight generalization of these theories accomodates the observed form and contains the previous forms as special cases. A critical assumption is that the strength of contacts within a multilayered overburden is overcome locally by layer-parallel shear. If this strength is less than the strength of the layers themselves, then layers over the center remain bonded together and display negligible bending, whereas layers over the periphery slip over one another and are readily bent into a monoclinal flexure. ?? 1981.
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Monoclinal bending of strata over laccolithic intrusions