1. the period from 1378 to 1417 during which there were two papacies in the Roman Catholic Church, one in Rome and one in Avignon;
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Schism \Schism\, n. [OE. scisme, OF. cisme, scisme, F. schisme,
L. schisma, Gr. schi`sma, fr. schi`zein to split; akin to L.
scindere, Skr. chid, and prob. to E. shed, v.t. (which see);
cf. Rescind, Schedule, Zest.]
Division or separation; specifically (Eccl.), permanent
division or separation in the Christian church; breach of
unity among people of the same religious faith; the offense
of seeking to produce division in a church without
Set bounds to our passions by reason, to our errors by
truth, and to our schisms by charity. --Eikon
Greek schism (Eccl.), the separation of the Greek and Roman
Great schism, or Western schism (Eccl.) a schism in the
Roman church in the latter part of the 14th century, on
account of rival claimants to the papal throne.
Schism act (Law), an act of the English Parliament
requiring all teachers to conform to the Established
Church, -- passed in 1714, repealed in 1719.
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):
n 1: the period from 1378 to 1417 during which there were two
papacies in the Roman Catholic Church, one in Rome and one