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Some times I encounter the phrase (ex: 世間の知るところとなる) and the usage of ところ seems unusual to me so after looking up in a dictionary I found this meaning for ところ:

《漢文の、受身を表す「所」の訓読から。「…ところとなる」の形で》前に置かれた語句が示す行為の対象であることを表す。「世人の称賛する―となった」

Is this the meaning being used here? If so, would "世間の知るところとなる" be essentially the same as "世間に知られる"?

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Yes that is the correct definition. The definition says this type of ところ refers to the object/target of the preceding verb, which may be true but is a little puzzling. The very literal translation would be something like "It became the target of people's knowing", but practically, it's okay to simply think ~ところとなる is just a set phrase that means "it turns out that ~".

As the dictionary says, this is from a convention of kanbun kundoku, which is a technique of forcibly reading Chinese passages as Japanese. There are many unconventional word usages in this field, and a few of them are occasionally used in stiff texts. 能わず is another example of this.

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