TThe Sappho Patera quadrangle (V–20) of Venus is bounded by 0° and 30° East longitude, 0° and 25° North latitude. It is one of 62 quadrangles covering the entire planet at a scale of 1:5,000,000. The quadrangle derives its name from Sappho Patera, a large rimmed depression (diameter about 225 km) lying on top of a shield-shaped mountain named Irnini Mons. Sappho, a noted Greek poet born about 612 B.C., spent most of her life on the island of Lesbos. All of her works were burned in 1073 by order of ecclesiastical authorities in Rome and Constantinople. What little survives was discovered in 1897 as parts of papier mâché coffins in the Fayum (Durant, 1939).
The Sappho Patera quadrangle includes the central portion of Eistla Regio, an elongated, moderately elevated (relief ~1 km) region extending for about 7,500 km west-northwestward from the west end of Aphrodite Terra. It is generally interpreted to be the surface manifestation of one or more mantle plumes (Phillips and Malin, 1983; Stofan and Saunders, 1990; Kiefer and Hager, 1991; Senske and others, 1992; Grimm and Phillips, 1992; Solomon and others, 1992). Eistla Regio is dominated by several large volcanic features. All or parts of four of these occur within the Sappho Patera quadrangle: the eastern flank of Gula Mons, Irnini Mons, Anala Mons, and Kali Mons. The quadrangle also includes eight named coronae: Nehalennia, Sunrta, Libera, Belet-Ili, Gaia, Asomama, Rabzhima, and Changko. A major rift extends from Gula Mons in the northwestern corner of the quadrangle to Libera Corona near the east border. East of Irnini and Anala Montes this rift is named Guor Linea; west of the montes it is named Virtus Linea. In addition to these major features, the Sappho Patera quadrangle includes numerous smaller volcanic flows and constructs, several unnamed coronae and corona-like features, a complex array of faults, fractures, and wrinkle ridges, and extensive plains that are continuous with the regional plains that constitute about 80% of the surface of Venus (Masursky and others, 1980).
This area is geologically interesting because it contains examples of most globally important types of features and deposits and is an excellent area to study the temporal and genetic relations among plains, rifts, coronae, and large shield volcanoes. The temporal relations displayed in this quadrangle can provide useful constraints on models for venusian tectonic style (McGill, 1994b).
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