The important accessory mineral magnetite is ubiquitously present within all constituent members of the Proterozoic zoned carbonatite body of the Sevvattur complex, North Arcot District, Tamil Nadu in southern India. The carbonatite appears to have been mainly emplaced as an arcuate or crescent-shaped, zoned intrusion. The carbonatite contain two generations of magnetite that occur as (1) opaque dust-like inclusions in the carbonate minerals, and (2) large euhedral phenocrysts. The latter measures up to 10 cm in length, are primary in nature and found mainly associated with essential minerals within the ferro-carbonatites (para-ankeritic carbonatites). In this paper, we present the detailed ore petrographic features of magnetite occurring within carbonatites of the Sevvattur complex. It is suggested that fine dust-like inclusions in the carbonate minerals may have formed at a late stage through dissociation of ankerite to calcite and magnetite. This occurred during upward migration of melts from a deep magma chamber that subsequently suffered secondary oxidation. The phenocryst variety, however, crystallized directly as primary minerals in the magma. © 2001 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.