I read the original pdf file a few years ago and found the text quite
accurate and fair. As a pro-ismaili reseacher, I can highly recommend
this book. There is a lot of sensational crap about the Assassins out
there but this book is not one of them.
The Assassins (also known as Nizaris) were a sect of the Ismailis in the
Middle Ages. They had castles in the north of Iran at Alamut and
elsewhere and also in Syria, where their chief was known to the
Crusaders as the Old Man of the Mountains. They are the first group in
history to have made systematic use of political murder (our word
"assassin" is a corruption of one of their nicknames) and their founder
Hasan-i-Sabbah has been compared to Osama bin Laden.
However, there is much more to their story than this. The Assassins had
an extraordinary philosophical and mystical system and there are
resemblances here to Sufism. The Aga Khan is a lineal descendant of the
Nizaris of Iran. Their remarkable story is presented here.
Chapter 1: Who were the Assassins?
The background to the story and an account of a personal visit to the
site of the castle at Alamut.
Chapter 2: Origins of the Sect
The Assassins were a branch of the Ismailis, who in turn arose as a
result of a schism within Shiism. The Ismailis conquered Egypt and built
Cairo. The founder of the Assassins, Hasan-i-Sabbah, spent some years in
Cairo in his youth although later the sect he headed broke away and
Chapter 3: Hasan the Sevener
This chapter describes what is known about the youth and early years of
Hasan-i-Sabbah, and includes an outline of the strange world view of the
Chapter 4: Hasan-i-Sabbah at Alamut
Hasan captured the castle at Alamut and inaugurated the sect which
became known in the West as the Assassins. He remained there for many
years until his death in 1124, and began the policy of political
Chapter 5: The Great Resurrection
In 1164 the Grand Master of Alamut called his followers together and
announced that the Muslim law was at an end; all his followers were now
living in the Time of the Resurrection. This is the central event in the
story of the sect.
Chapter 6: The Assassins in Syria
The Syrian offshoot of the Assassins was to some extent independent of
Alamut under its talented and remarkable ruler, Sinan, who became known
to the Crusaders as the "Old Man of the Mountains".
Chapter 7: Decline and Fall
The Assassins gradually declined in power and influence and were finally
destroyed by the Mongols.
Chapter 8: Continuing Echoes
The Assassins disappeared in Iran but continued in India as the Khojas.
The Aga Khan is the lineal descendant of the Grand Masters of Alamut.