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Trent, Council of

Introduction

Trent, Council of, 1545–47, 1551–52, 1562–63, 19th ecumenical council of the Roman Catholic Church, convoked to meet the crisis of the Protestant Reformation . Earlier efforts at reforming the church had already produced the Fifth Lateran Council (1512–17), but it had proved ineffectual. The rise of Lutheranism brought forth a church-wide reaction that was strongly anti-Lutheran. It hoped for a new council, and when Paul III was elected pope in 1534 such a council seemed assured (see Counter Reformation ). The obstacles, however, took 10 years to overcome, for now that a known reformer was pope, those opposing reform were not eager for a meeting.

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