Book III

Reign of Kia Busurgomid, and his Son, Mohammed.

Kia Busurgomid, who had been the general and Dai of Hassan, succeeded him in the spiritual power; and trod precisely in the sanguinary steps of the founder of the order. Daggers and fortresses were the foundations of Hassan’s power, and that of his successor rested on the same basis; the most illustrious leaders of the enemy either fell, or were tottering to their fall. New castles were taken or built. Thus, that of Maimundis was erected;88 the ruin of which drew with it, in the sequel, the death of the grand-master, and the suppression of the order. Abdolmelek was declared its dehdar, or commandant. These precautions were the more necessary, as the Sultan Sandjar, who had long been deemed a secret protector of the order, now publicly declared himself their enemy. In the month Shaaban, of the same year, also, Atabeg Shirghir, overran the province of Rudbar with an army. The body, which the grand-master sent against him, put the enemy to flight, and carried off a rich booty.89

The war, the year following,90 assumed a still more cruel character, when a great multitude of Bathenites were put to the sword, by order of Sandjar; nor was it altered on Mahmud’s succeeding to the throne of Irak, in the place of his nephew, Sandjar.91 This sovereign resolved to combat the Assassins with their own weapons of perfidy and murder; a determination unworthy the assertor of a good cause. After being some time at open war with Kia Busurg, the sultan requested, through the medium of his grand falconer, that some one should be sent from Alamut, on the part of the grand-master, to treat of peace. The Khoja Mohammed Nassihi Sheristani was sent: he was admitted to the honour of kissing the sultan’s hand, who addressed a few words to him on the subject of peace. On leaving the presence, the Khoja, or master, and his accompanying Refik (fellow) were savagely butchered by the populace.92

Mahmud despatched an envoy to Alamut, to excuse this action; in which, according to his own asseverations, he had had no share. Kia Busurg made answer to the envoy: “Go back to the sultan, and tell him, in my name, Mohammed Nassihi trusted to your perfidious assurances, and repaired to your court; if you speak truly, deliver up the murderers to justice; if not, expect my vengeance.” Mahmud not attending to this, a body of Assassins came to the very gates of Kaswin,93 where they killed four hundred men, and carried off three thousand sheep, two hundred horses and camels, and two hundred oxen and asses. The inhabitants followed them, but the death of one of their chief men interrupted their pursuit.94

The year following,95 the sultan captured, though but for a brief period, Alamut itself, the stronghold of the order’s sovereignty;96 and immediately after, a thousand men were sent against the castle of Lamsir, who, as soon as they heard that the Refik, or companions of the order, were in advance against them, instantly fled without striking a blow. Immediately after the death of Mahmud, which was most probably caused by the machinations of the Assassins, without, however, any accusation of the kind, the companions of the order made a second irruption into the environs of Kaswin,97 and carried off two hundred horses, and after killing a hundred Turcomans, and twenty of the citizens, they retired. The forces of Alamut then marched against Abu Hashem, a descendant of Ali, who had usurped the dignity of imam in Ghilan, and invited the people, by manifestos, to recognize him as their legitimate lord. Kia Busurg wrote to him, advising him to desist from his aspiring projects; he, however, replied, with reviling the impious lore of the Ismailites: they made war upon him, beat him in Dilem, took him prisoner, and, after holding a council of war, delivered him over to the stake.98

On the death of Mahmud, when Messud ascended the throne of the Seljukides, Itsis, the prince of Khowaresm, a country lying between the confines of Khorassan, and the mouth of the Oxus, came to him, to communicate the determination he had formed, of exterminating the Ismailites. Although the large province of Khorassan lies between Khowaresm and Kuhistan, or the Highlands, where the Ismailis nestled, like birds of prey, amongst the rocks, yet the sovereign of Khowaresm, not unjustly, dreaded the approach of such dangerous neighbours, whose poniards reached even their most distant foes. Messud, participating in the maxims and designs of Itsis, presented him with the fief which had been held by Berenkish, the grand falconer, who in his irritation, took refuge with Kiabusurg, and sent his wives and children to the castle of Dherkos, which was in the possession of the Ismailites. Although this man, till now their declared enemy, had not only attacked them in open warfare, but also with their own weapons, perfidy and treachery, the grand-master considered it politic to exercise the rights of hospitality towards him, who had now flown to their protection. It was the more advisable to create a new friend to the order, as Khowaresmshah, who had hitherto shown tokens of a friendly disposition, had, all at once, declared himself an enemy. The latter sent the following message to the grand-master: “Berenkish and his party were heretofore your declared enemies; I, on the other hand, was bound to you by true attachment. Now that the sultan has given me his fief, he has sought an asylum with you; if you will deliver him up to me, our friendship will receive still further increase.” Kiabusurg replied: “Khowaresmshah speaks truly, but we will never surrender our protegés to the enemy.” This was the origin of tedious hostilities between Khowaresmshah and Kiabusurg.99

It was natural that princes, who, for a time, were blinded by the representations of the Dais, and the attractions of the Ismailitic secret doctrine, should have hastened, as friends, to their arms, but should afterwards snatch themselves away, dreading lest the embrace, like that of the Spanish maiden, should be but a form of execution, under which murdering daggers lay concealed. Thus, the Sultan Sandjar, and Itsis, shah of Khowaresm, who were both at first reckoned among the friends and partisans of the order, became their open foes; and we have seen that, at Aleppo, they enjoyed, during the reign of Riswan, the most powerful influence; but, under his son, were extirpated with the sword. Such was their fate also at Damascus; where, during the reign of Busi, they found a powerful protector in the vizier Tahir, the son of Saad of Masdeghan. The Persian Assassin, Behram of Astrabad, who commenced his operations with the murder of his uncle, gained over the vizier, who gave him the castle of Banias, as Riswan had given the more inland fortress, Sarmin, to the nephew of Hassan Sabah.100 Banias, the ancient Balanea, signifying the old city seated in the little bay, gave its name to the castle newly erected in A. D. 1162; A. H. 454. It is a farsang, or four thousand paces, distant from the sea, in a fertile, well-watered plain; where, in former times, more than a hundred thousand buffaloes found pasture.101 The valley, into which numerous rivulets fall, is called Wady ol Jinn (the valley of demons), a place whose very name rendered it worthy of being a settlement of Assassins. From this place,102 they became masters of the surrounding castles and towns; and Banias became the centre of their power in Syria, until they transferred it, twelve years afterwards, to Massiat.

Behram had long prosecuted the designs of the order at Aleppo and Damascus, where he was recognised and favoured as Dai, by the princes Ilghasi and Togteghin. When, by the possession of Banias, he had obtained a firm footing in Syria, the power and insolence of the Assassins attained its height. From all sides they hastened to the new point of union, and princes did not venture to protect any one against them. The jurists and theologians, more particularly the Soonnites, those universal victims, were struck dumb with fear of them, and of the disfavour of the princes. Behram did not fall by their vengeance, but by that of the inhabitants of the valley of Taim, an appendage to the district of Baalbek, and inhabited by a mixture of Nossairis, Druses, and Magians. Their brave leader, Dohak, burned to revenge the death of his brother Barak, the son of Jendel, who had been slain by the Assassins, by command of Behram; he united, for this purpose, the warriors of his native vale, with succours from Damascus, and the surrounding towns. Behram hoped to surprise them defenceless, at the head of his Ismailites; he, however, fell into their hands, and was instantly cut in pieces. His head and hands were brought to Egypt, where the khalif presented the bearer with a rich habit, and had them carried about in triumph in Cairo and Fostath. The Ismailis who escaped, fled from the valley of Taim, to Banias, where Behram, prior to the expedition, had committed the command to Ismail, the Persian. The vizier Masdeghani entered into friendly alliance with him, as with his predecessor. Ismail sent to Damascus, one of his creatures, Abulwefa, literally, Father of Fidelity, but, in reality, the model of perfidiousness.103 By his intrigues, he succeeded in obtaining, not only the office of Dailkebir, or prior of the Ismailites, but also that of Hakem, or chief judge of the district.

At Cairo, the dignity of grand-master of the lodge (Dail-doat), was frequently united by the Ismailites, with that of chief justice (Kadhi al Kodhat). As the attainment of rule was the object of the order, and as no means were left untried to accomplish it, Abulwefa sought conquest by means of treachery, and greatness by perjury. The Crusaders, whose power was continually on the increase in Syria, appeared to him the most fitting instruments of his ambitious designs. As the enemies of Mohammedanism, they were the natural allies of its most dangerous opponents. The bulwarks of the faith of Mohammed, shaken from without by the tempest of the Crusaders, and undermined from within by the atheistical doctrines of the Assassins, threatened an earlier and a more certain fall; and the pious warriors, in union with their impious allies, promised the sooner to erect the cross and the dagger on their ruins. Abulwefa entered into a treaty with the king of Jerusalem, by which he bound himself, on a certain Friday, to put the city of Damascus in his possession. While the Emir Busi, and his magnates, both courtly and military, were assembled at their devotions in the mosque, all the approaches to it were to be hemmed in by conspirators, and the gates of the city opened to the Christians. In return for this service, the king promised to deliver the city of Tyre into his power.104

Hugo de Payens, the first grand-master of the Templars, seems to have been the principal agent in urging Baldwin II., King of Jerusalem, to this strange alliance of the cross and the dagger. For ten years after its first institution,105 this order remained in obscurity; fulfilling, besides the usual evangelical vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, a fourth, the protection of pilgrims; but still existing only as a private society, without statutes or knightly habits.

By the code of rules given by St. Bernard, and confirmed by Pope Honorius I., it raised itself at once, to the splendour of a powerful chivalric order, for the defence of the holy sepulchre, and the protection of the pilgrims.106 According to Miræus, its members consisted of knights, esquires, and lay-brothers, which answer to the companions (Refik), agents (Fedavi), and laymen (Lassick), of the Ismailites, as the priors, grand-priors, and grand-master, did to the Dai, Dailkebir, and Sheikh of the mountain. As the Refik were clothed in white, with red insignia, so the knights wore white mantles with red crosses; and as the castles of the Assassins arose in Asia, so did the hospitals of the Templars in Europe.

The grand-master Hugo, came this year107 to Jerusalem, accompanied by a great retinue of knights and pilgrims, who, at his exhortation, had assumed the cross, and taken up arms in defence of the holy sepulchre.108 The siege of Damascus was immediately decided upon. After the death of the dreaded Togteghin, which had but lately occurred, his son Taj-ol-Moluk109 Busi succeeded him. In his name, the vizier Tahir-ben-Saad exercised the supreme power, and, through him, the chiefs of the Ismailites, first the warrior Behram, afterwards the judge Abulwefa, with whom the treacherous surrender of Damascus, in exchange for Tyre, was agreed upon.

Taj-ol-Moluk Busi having received timely notice of the designs of the Ismailites, caused his vizier, the son of Saad, to be put to death; and then gave orders for a general massacre of all of the order who were in the city. Six thousand fell by the sword, which avenged the victims of the dagger. It was not an execution, but an indiscriminate slaughter. In the meanwhile, a numerous Christian army, certain of the promised surrender of the city, had advanced on the road to Damascus, as far as Marj Safar. Among them, besides many pilgrims of the west, were the king and barons of Jerusalem, with their allies, Prince Bernard of Antioch, Pontius, Count of Tripoli, and Joscelin of Edessa, with many knights and esquires. The soldiery, under the command of the constable, William of Buris, had gone with a thousand knights, to plunder the villages, and collect provisions; marching, however, as was usual with an army of pilgrims, without order and discipline, they were, with many of the knights, almost entirely destroyed, by an attack of a small body of valiant warriors from Damascus. The rest, as soon as they learned the disgraceful defeat of their brethren, flew to arms, and hastened to attack the Damascenes; to wash out with their blood the stain inflicted on the Christian army.

A dreadful darkness, however, came on, interrupted only by the glare of the lightning and howling of the tempest; in the midst of the thunder, the cataracts of heaven poured down rain, and inundated the roads, when suddenly, as if the order of the seasons had at once been changed—as if summer and winter would together have raged in all their severity, the rain and flood were changed to snow and ice. Such rapid mutations of the atmosphere, and sudden vicissitudes of the weather, from one extreme to the other, are not, indeed, rare in those countries; but they astonished the inexperienced wanderers, as extraordinary phenomena of nature.

The author of the present work has, during his travels, more than once experienced this, and in a terribly sublime manner, in the defile of Marmaris; as did the British fleet, and the Egyptian army of occupation. Heavy clouds darkened the approach of night; torrents of rain, which poured from them and from the rocks, carried away arms and tents; the howling of the storm and the roaring of the thunder, drowned the speaking-trumpets of the distressed ships, which were driving from their anchors. On the cessation of the tempest, which lasted the whole night, and grew calmer towards morning, the first dawn showed the masts dashed to pieces by the wind, and the rocks scathed by the lightning, and covered with a large quantity of snow.

The army of the Gauls, which, in ancient times, under the command of Brennus, sacked the temple of Delphi, experienced a similar contest and alternation of seasons, and an equally violent storm.110 And as, at that time, these natural phenomena were deemed a token of the celestial punishment of the sacrilegious presumption of the Gauls, so were they also considered by the Crusaders as a mark of the anger of Heaven at their sins, and their late compact with the Assassins, which blood and perjury could alone confirm. The only advantage which they derived from this monstrous union of piety and impiety, was the possession of the castle of Banias, which the commander, Ismail, fearing lest he should meet the fate of his brethren of Damascus, delivered up to the knight, Rainier de Brus, the same year,111 in which the fortress of Alamut surrendered to Sultan Mahmud. Thus fell, at the same time, the two citadels of the order in Persia and Syria, and so near was the risk of its complete annihilation.

A persevering spirit of enterprise, however, overcame the untowardness of events. Both Alamut and Banias soon returned to their former possessors. The latter was re-taken, three years afterwards,112 by Ismail, while Rainier de Brus and his soldiery lay before Joppa, with the king of Jerusalem. Among the prisoners who were carried away, Rainier lost a beloved wife; whom, on her release during a truce with Ismail, he received affectionately, but repulsed her on learning that she had neither preserved her faith among the infidels, nor her honour among the impious. She confessed her sin, and retired into a convent of devout females at Jerusalem.113

The less the designs of the Ismailites prospered by the sword, the more successful and persevering were they with the dagger; and, however dangerous to the order the times might be, they were not the less so to its most powerful adversaries. A long series of great and celebrated men, who, during the grand-mastership of Kiabusurgomid, fell by the poniards of his Fedavi, signalized the bloody annals of his reign; and, as formerly, according to the fashion of oriental historians, there follows, at the end of each prince’s reign, a catalogue of great statesmen, generals, and literati, who have either adorned it by their lives, or troubled it with their death; so, in the annals of the Assassins, is found the chronological enumeration of celebrated men of all nations who have fallen the victims of the Ismailites, to the joy of their murderers, and the sorrow of the world. The first, under the grand-mastership of Kiabusurgomid, was Cassim-ed-dewlet114 Aksonkor Bourshi, the brave prince of Mossul, feared alike by the Crusaders and the Assassins, as one of their deadliest enemies.115 Having fought his last battle with the former, near Maarra Mesrin, he was, on the first Sunday after his return,116 attacked by eight Assassins, disguised as dervishes, as he was in the act of seating himself on his throne in the mosque at Mossul: protected by a coat of mail and his natural bravery, he defended himself against the wretches, three of whom he stretched at his feet; but before his retinue could hasten to his assistance, he received a mortal wound, from the effects of which he expired the same day. The remaining Assassins were sacrificed to the vengeance of the populace, with the exception of one young man from the village of Katarnash, in the mountains near Eras, whose mother, on hearing of Aksonkor’s murder, dressed and adorned herself for joy at the successful issue of the attempt, in which her son had devoted his life; but, on his returning alone, she cut off her hair, and blackened her face, with the deepest sorrow, that he had not shared the murderers’ honourable death. To such lengths did the Assassins carry their point of honour, and what may be termed their Spartanism.117

Moineddin, the vizier of Sultan Sandjar, was also murdered118 by an Assassin, hired by his enemy, Derkesina, the vizier of Mohammed, and a friend of the Ismailites. In order the better to attain his object, the ruffian entered his service as a groom. One day, as the vizier went into the stable to inspect his horses, the false groom appeared before him without clothes, in order to avoid all suspicion of carrying concealed weapons, although he had hidden his dagger in the mane of the horse, whose bridle he was holding. The horse reared, and under pretence of quieting him with caresses, he snatched his poniard, and stabbed the vizier.119

If Bourshi, Prince of Mossul, stood on the list of the victims of the Ismailites solely because he was the rival of their power; and an obstacle to their greatness, we shall not be surprised at finding the name of Busi, the Prince of Damascus, by whose orders the Vizier Masdeghani, and six thousand Assassins, had been massacred. The slightest pretence was sufficient to cause the blood of princes to flow beneath their stilettos; how much more when their own called as in this latter case, for revenge. To escape was beyond the power of prudence, as they watched for years for time, place, and opportunity. Busi, the son of Togteghin, was, in the second year after the massacre,120 attacked by its avengers, and received two wounds, one of which healed immediately; the other was, however, mortal, the following year.121

The vengeance of the Assassins seems to to have descended from father to son: Shems-ol-Moluk (the sun of the king), the son of Busi, and grandson of Togteghin, fell a victim to a conspiracy.122 There fell, besides, under the daggers of the order, the judges of the east and the west, Abusaid Herawi, the mufti of Kaswin, Hassan-ben-Abelkassem; the reis of Ispahan, Seid Dewletshah; and the reis of Tebris.123 These were the most celebrated of a numerous body of officers of state and jurists, who perished in heaps and unnamed. To drag from amongst the murdered the most splendid victims, is the melancholy and sorrowful duty of the historian of the Assassins.

Hitherto, their attacks had been directed only against viziers and emirs, the subordinate instruments of the khalif’s power; and the throne itself, which they were undermining, had remained unstained by the blood of its possessors. The period, however, was now arrived, in which the order dared to seal their doctrine with the blood of those khalifs, to whom it was so destructive, and to deprive the successors of the prophet not merely of their temporal power, but likewise of their lives. The shadow of God on earth, as the khalifs called themselves, was, indeed, a mere shadow of earthly power; and was, when he would have asserted more, sent, by the dagger of the Assassin to the shades below.

We have seen, that the secret doctrine of the Ismailites derived its origin from the lodge at Cairo, long before the foundation of the order, of the Assassins; and flourished under the protection of the Fatimites, the rivals of the Assassins, and their competitors for the throne. By a just retribution, this protection of a doctrine of irreligion and immorality was avenged on the Fatimites themselves, by the murderous order which sprung from it. The Egyptian khalif, Emr Biahkamillah Abu Ali Manssur,124 tenth of the Fatimite dynasty (whose founder, Obeidollah, had made the lodge of the secret doctrine a part of his ministerial policy), fell, in the twenty-ninth year of his reign, under the dagger of the Assassin.125

It is not clear whether his death proceeded from the policy of the order, or the private revenge of the family of the powerful Vizier Efdhal.126 This emir was equally dangerous to the Christians by the zeal with which he prosecuted the war, and to the khalif, by his colossal power in the state. He was murdered by two Assassins, of whom it is uncertain whether they were the instruments of their superiors, at that time in alliance with the Crusaders, or the hirelings of the khalif. The latter is probable, from the circumstance that Abu Ali, the son of Efdhal, was, immediately after his death, thrown into prison, and on being set at liberty after the murder of the khalif, was invested with his father’s dignity. As, however, Abu Ali himself shortly after fell by the dagger, it appears that these two assassinations proceeded from the profound policy of the concealed fomentors. From this period, Egypt became a scene of disorder and confusion, occasioned by the violent contests between the partisans of the khalif thrones of Cairo and Bagdad. Mostarshedbillah-Abu-Manssur-Fasl, the twenty-ninth Abbasside khalif, sustained himself on the latter for seventeen years, though constantly tottering.

Hitherto, the Seljukide sultans who had, under the pretext of being the protectors of the khalifat of Bagdad, assumed all the temporal power, had, at least, left to the Abbasside khalif the two highest prerogatives of Islamism,—the mint, and prayers from the pulpit on Fridays. If they stamped any coin, it was in the name of the khalif; for whom, likewise, they prayed weekly in the mosques. Messud was the first to appoint the khatibs, or Friday prayer, to be in his own name; an injury which Mostarshed was obliged, however unwilling, to endure, as he was not strong enough to resent it. A few years afterwards, however, when some dissatisfied chieftains deserted with their troops from Messud to Mostarshed, they persuaded the latter that it would be easy to subdue the sultan; he, in consequence, took the field against him. In the very first engagement, the khalif was abandoned by the greater part of his troops, and taken prisoner by Messud, who carried him to Meragha, on his campaign against his own nephew, David.

A treaty was concluded, by which the khalif engaged to confine himself within the walls of Bagdad, and to pay the sultan an annual tribute. This composition deceived the expectations of the Ismailites, who had hoped that the result of this war, between the sultan and the khalif, would be the destruction of the latter: the grand-master, therefore, resolved to complete what the sultan had begun; and that, though the khalif had escaped the sword, he should not be spared by the dagger. In the camp, two farsangs from Meragha, while Messud was absent, having gone to meet the ambassadors of Sandjar, Assassins put the khalif and his immediate suite to death;127 and not content with that foul deed, mutilated the dead, in the most horrible manner, by cutting off the noses and ears; as though they would, to the treason of a khalif’s murder, add insults to his corpse.128

Reign of Mohammed, Son of Kia Busurgomid.

After a blood-stained reign of fourteen years and three days, Kia Busurgomid, feeling his end approaching, named his son, Mohammed, as successor in the grand-mastership of the order; either because he really found none other worthy of the office, or that the natural desire of making the sovereignty hereditary in his family caused him to depart from the spirit of the fundamental maxims of the order, as they had been sketched out by Hassan Sabah. Be that as it may, the office, which, without respect to relationship, ought to have depended on the nomination of the existing grand-master, remained hereditary in the family of Busurgomid to the fall of the order. His death was, at first, a cause of great joy to the enemies of the Ismailites; when, however, they perceived that his son drove the chariot of restless ambition in the bloody track of his father, all Asia again sank into despair. He began, as his father had ended, with regicide; and before the votaries of Islam had time to recover from the consternation, with which the murder of the Khalif Mostarshed had overwhelmed them, their ears were horror-stricken with the intelligence of the fate of Rashid, his successor. The order had hoped, by the violent death of Mostarshed, to succeed in involving the khalifat in confusion and immediately effecting its ruin. This expectation, however, proving fallacious; and Rashid, immediately on taking possession of the vacant throne, and ere he was firmly seated on it, meditating revenge against his father’s butchers, the new grand-master resolved to begin where his predecessor had ended, and to heap murder on murder, crime on crime, and to add regicide to treason.

The khalif went from Ramadan to Ispahan where he had just begun to recover from an attack of illness. Four Assassins, natives of Khorassan, and who had mingled with his retinue, watched an opportunity of stealing into his tent, and poniarded him. He was buried on the spot where he fell; and the troops which he had collected from Bagdad, for the purpose of a campaign against the Ismailites, dispersed. When the news of this successful atrocity, and the frustrated expedition reached Alamut, the residence of the grand-master, public festivals and rejoicings were appointed on the occasion. For seven days and seven nights the kettle drums and cornets echoed from the turrets of the fortress, and published to the surrounding castles the jubilee of crime and the triumph of murder. Proofs so cutting as the Assassins’ daggers (to use an expression of Mirkhond) raised their claims beyond the reach of doubts, and imposed the silence of the grave on their opponents.

A terror but too well founded seized the khalifs of the race of Abbas, who, henceforth, did not venture to show themselves in public. The companions of impiety (Refik), and the dedicated to murder (Fedavi), spread themselves in troops over the whole of Asia, and darkened the face of the earth. The castles already in their possession were maintained and fortified, and new ones built or purchased. Thus they obtained in Syria, Kadmos, Kahaf, and Massiat: the two former were sold to them by Ibn Amrun;129 the latter they wrested from the commandant of the lords of Sheiser,130 and made it the centre of their Syrian power, where, even now, traces of it are to be found.131

While the order was thus aggrandizing itself, and striking its foes with terror, by the acquisition of strong places and the use of the dagger, the fundamental maxim, which separated so completely the secret doctrine of the initiated from the public tenets of the people, was observed to the letter; and the fulfilment of the injunctions of Mohammedanism was the more strictly exacted, the more indifferent the superiors considered faith and morals to be to themselves. The people saw only the effect of their terrible power, without perceiving the moving force, or its instruments. They saw, in the numerous victims of the poniard, only the enemies of the order and religion, which the vengeance of heaven had visited by the arm of a secret tribunal. The grand-master, his priors and envoys, did not preach sovereignty in their own name, or in that of their order, but of the invisible imam, of whom they called themselves the apostles, and who was to appear, at some future period, to assert his right to the dominion of the earth with a conqueror’s power. Their doctrine was enveloped in a veil of the profoundest mystery, and ostensibly its maintainers appeared only as strict observers of the rites of Islamism. A proof of this is afforded by the answer given to the envoy of Sultan Sandjar, who had been sent from Rei to collect official information concerning the Ismailitic doctrines. He was told by the superiors, “Our doctrine is as follows: we believe in the unity of God, and consider that only as true wisdom, which accords with His word and the commands of the prophet; we observe these, as they are given in the holy book of the Koran; we believe in all that the prophet has taught concerning the creation and the last day, rewards and punishments, the judgment and the resurrection. To believe this is necessary, and no one is permitted to pass his judgment on God’s commands, or even to alter a letter of them. These are the fundamental rules of our sect; and if the sultan approves them not, he may send one of his theologians to enter into polemical discussions on the subject.”132

In this spirit, during the reign of Kia Mohammed, which lasted twenty-five years,—that of his father, Kia Busurgomid, of fourteen years,—and that of the founder, Hassan Sabah, of thirty-five, the external rites of Islamism were strictly observed. Kia Mohammed, however, had neither the intellect nor the experience of his predecessors; and it soon appeared what an error Kia Busurgomid had committed, in consulting, in his choice of a successor, the ties of kindred rather than innate talent. From his want of knowledge and capacity, Kia Mohammed was but little esteemed by the people, who transferred their attachment to his son, Hassan. The latter was regarded as a man of great attainments, and he availed himself of the good opinion of the ignorant multitude, not for the general interest of the order, but entirely contrary to its institutions, to serve the purposes of his own private ambition. Initiated into all the mysteries of the secret doctrine, deeply versed in philosophy and history, he stood forward as a popular teacher and expounder, and favoured the report which had begun to be spread abroad, that he was the imam promised by Hassan-ben-Sabah. The companions of the order respected him more and more every day, and rivalled each other in the promptitude with which they executed his behests.

Kia Mohammed, on learning his son’s conduct, and the disposition of the people, convened them, and declaring his disapprobation of the proceedings of the former, said, “Hassan is my son, and I am not the imam, but one of his precursors. Whoever maintains the contrary is an infidel.” Two hundred and fifty of his son’s adherents were put to death, and as many more were banished. Hassan, fearing his father’s anger, himself anathematised the illuminati, and wrote treatises in which he condemned the opinions of his partisans, and asserted those of his father. In this manner he succeeded, by his dissimulation, in preserving his own head, and obliterating all suspicion from his father’s mind. As, however, he was in the habit of drinking wine in secret, and permitted himself to practise what was forbidden, his adherents saw, in these actions, new indications of his mission as the promised imam, whose advent was to abrogate all prohibitory commands.133

About this period, nearly all the Asiatic monarchies were revolutionized by the change of the order of succession; and new dynasties arose on the ruins of their predecessors. As the order of the Ismailites was inimical to all rulers, and treated hostilely by most of them, and as they infused into all governments the envenomed and pernicious influence of murder and sedition, their history stands in close relation with that of all the contemporaneously paramount dynasties; and a glance at the reigning families of Asia will not be out of place here. From the confines of Khorassan to the mountains of Syria, from the Musdoramus to Lebanon, from the Caspian to the Mediterranean, extended the widely spread ramifications of the empire of the Assassins; their centre being the grand-master, in his mountain fort of Alamut, in Irak.

We shall take a cursory glance at these broad regions of Asia, according to the political divisions of the period, and proceeding in natural geographical order, from east to west, our progress will commence with Khorassan and terminate in Syria.

Khorassan, however, first deserves mention not merely on account of its geographical position and its immediate vicinity to Kuhistan, the eastern grand-priorate of the order, but also by reason of the preponderating power of Sultan Sandjar, whose dominion had been founded at the same epoch as that of Hassan Sabah, and whose reign had proceeded contemporaneously with the first three grand-masters, and terminated only with his death, four years earlier than that of Kia Mohammed, the third grand-master.

Moeseddin Abulharess Sandjar, one of the greatest princes of the Seljukide race, and of the east, received, after the demise of his father, the Sultan Melekshah, which, as we have seen, occurred immediately after the occupation of Alamut by Hassan Sabah,134 the vice-royalty of Khorassan, which province he governed, for twenty years, in the name of his brothers, Barkyarok and Mohammed, who, as the heads of the Seljuk family, reigned in Irak.

On the death of his brother Mohammed, in the first year of the sixth century of the Hegira,135 Sandjar took possession of his states. He made war upon his nephew, Mahmud, who wished to assert his paternal rights, defeated him, and at length, when the sagacity of the vizier Kemaleddin Ali had mediated a peace, allotted him his paternal kingdom, as a fief, upon the following four conditions: 1st. That in the public prayers in the mosques, on Fridays, the name of Sultan Sandjar should stand before that of Mahmud (the prayers and the mint are the first regal prerogatives of Islam); 2nd. That the latter should have only three curtains to the door of his hall of audience (Sultan Sandjar had four, and the khalif seven; to raise and lower which was the office of the Hajeb, or chief chamberlain); 3rd. That no trumpet should sound on his entrance or exit from his palace (a flourish of trumpets was, at that time, the privilege of sovereigns, as is, at this day, the ringing of bells a mark of distinction for their representatives); 4th. That he should retain in their dignities the officers appointed by his uncle.

Mahmud submitted to these conditions; and as only the name and appearance of rule were left him, he embraced the wise resolution of not involving himself deeper in political matters, but devoting himself entirely to the pleasures of the chase, which, as an exercise and school of war, has, from remote antiquity, been considered, in the east, less as a princely amusement than a royal occupation. (Hence Nimrod was a mighty hunter before the Lord, and Cyrus an arranger of hunting; hence, too, the most ancient monarchs of the Assyrians and Persians are represented on the monuments of Persepolis, and the amulets excavated from the ruins of Babylon, as engaged in an heroic combat with wild animals; hence, in the last Persian dynasty, the cognomen of the “Wild Ass,” was given to Behramgur, one of their bravest and sport-loving princes: and hence, likewise, the immense park or royal chase of Khosru Parwis). In this spirit, Mahmud expended his treasure in the splendour of his hunting equipments; he had a pack of four hundred hounds, with gold collars and housings embroidered with pearls.136

Thirty years after this peace between Mahmud and Sandjar, Behramshah, the last prince but one of the once powerful dynasty of the sultans of Gasna, attempted to shake off the yoke of the Seljukides; feeling, however, the enterprise to be beyond his powers, he sent ambassadors to renew his homage to Sandjar. With him he succeeded, but not so with Hossein Jehansus, the founder of the Indian dynasty of the Gurides, who, about this time,137 raised themselves on the ruin of the power of the Gasnewides. Behramshah, the Gasnewide, yielded to the power of Hossein, the Guride, as did the latter to that of Sultan Sandjar, who drove the founder of the Gurides out of Khorassan, and then appointed him his viceroy of the Indian province of Gur (whence the name of the dynasty). The fortune, which had smiled on Sandjar in his enterprises against Mahmud, Behramshah, and Hossein, was not so favourable to him, in his wars against the people of Karakhatai, whom he attacked in the obscurity of their forests; nor against the Turcomans of the race of Oghuz, who invaded Khorassan. He lost, in the battle which he fought with Gurjash, the prince of the former, thirty thousand men, together with his harem; and Tarkhau Khatun, the first of his wives, was made captive by the Karakhtaiyis.

Still worse was his success against the Oghuz Turcomans, whom he wished to compel to an annual tribute of sheep, which they refused. He was taken prisoner by them, and confined, for four years, in an iron cage. The Turkish historians, who relate this unworthy treatment of the great Sultan Sandjar, deny Sultan Bajazet’s having experienced the same from his conqueror, Timur.

Concerning this last, European writers add, that whenever he mounted his horse, he placed his foot on the neck of the Ottoman sultan, as, it is said, the Persian king, Shabur (Sapor), had done a thousand years before, to his captive, the Roman emperor, Valerian. Valerian and Bajazet perished in the captivity of Shabur and Timur; but Sandjar had the good fortune to make his escape from his barbarous conquerors, and returned to Khorassan, where he died the following year, from melancholy, caused by his bad fortune, and the desolation of his states; after a reign of fifty-one years, and a life of nearly a hundred, as he had before he became sole ruler, acted, for twenty-one years, as viceroy of his brothers, in Khorassan. His brilliant exploits, and the encomiums of the poets, have caused his name to shine among those of the most illustrious princes of the east; and have not undeservedly gained him the surname of Alexander the Second. The greatest poets of his time, Selmar and Ferideddin Katib, sang his praise; but, above all, Enweri, the Persian Pindar. Unequalled in his panegyrics, either by his predecessor, Khakani, or his follower, Farjabi, who, with him, form the astral triangle of Persian panegyrists, he raised the name of Sandjar high above the regions of earth in the light of the milky way, and to the highest heavens, in the midst of the music of the spheres. While Enweri thus bestowed immortality on Sandjar in his works, the poet Sabir did him a no less essential service in prolonging his sublunary existence, by protecting him from the murderous dagger.

When Itsis, the governor of Khowaresm, rebelled against Sandjar, the latter sent the poet, one of the most faithful and respected in his court, secretly to Khorassan, as a spy upon the designs of the rebellious governor. He succeeded in ascertaining that Itsis had engaged an Assassin (Fedavi), to murder the sultan, in the mosque, on a Friday. The murderer was discovered, by means of the exact description sent by Sabir to Sandjar, and, after confessing every thing, he was put to death. Itsis, however, who was aware that Sabir had caused his design to fail, had him drowned in the Oxus.138 Sabir thus gained an immortal name, in the ranks of great poets and faithful servants, not only by his encomiastic poems, but also by his praiseworthy deeds. Sandjar, who, at first, had been favourably inclined towards the Assassins, seems to have had his eyes opened by this attempt, and to have been urged to the severity with which, as we have already related, in his latter years, he pursued the order who had caused the irruption of the Turcomans.

Sandjar, if not the most dangerous, was yet, at this period, the most powerful of the enemies of the Ismailites. With the exception of the phantom of spiritual power, which sat on the throne of the khalifat, and whose nominal superiority was acknowledged by the Asiatic princes in their Friday’s prayers, the most powerful sovereigns either held their states in fee, as the vassals of the Sultan Sandjar, or governed them as his lieutenants. As, in the ancient Persian empire, the seven satraps of the distant large provinces, surrounded the throne of the great king as viceroys (like the seven Amshaspande collected round the throne of Ormusd), so the rulers, of seven powerful dignities, acknowledged the Sultan Sandjar as the source of their power; which, indeed, enfeebled by distance, operated less powerfully on the extreme points of the circumference, than in the centre.

The Indian provinces of Multan and Gur, immediately to the south of Khorassan, were governed by the Sultan of the Gasnewides, Behramshah, and him of the Gurides, Hossein Jehansus (world burning). Ahmed, the son of Soleiman, whose frequent rebellions had brought upon him as frequent punishments, ruled in northern Transoxana; and the adjacent province of Khowaresm was held in fief by, first, Kotbeddin, then his son, Itsis, two great court and hereditary dignities, who likewise held the office of chief cup-bearer. In middle Persia, reigned the Sultan Mahmud, the Seljukide, under the guidance of his uncle Sandjar; and in the northern and western provinces, Aserbijan and Irak, the two dynasties of the Atabegs, founded by Amadeddin Ben Senji and the Turcoman Ildigis, acknowledged him as paramount lord. As the two powerful families of the Gasnewides and Seljukides, after reigning more than a century, were nodding to their fall, and the dynasties of the Atabegs were shooting up into multifarious branches, we think a few words relative to the origin of the latter not unsuitable.

Atabeg, not Father of the Prince, as it has been translated, but, Father Prince, or Princely Father, was an honorary title, first borne by the great Vizier Nisam-ol-mulk, without any claim to unlimited authority, and still less to be hereditary. Under the successors of Melekshah, this title distinguished the highest military dignity of the empire, and was given, at the court of the Bagdad khalif, to the Emir-ol-umera (i. e. prince of princes); and at the court of Cairo, to the Emir-ol-juyush, or prince of the army. But, as at a preceding epoch, the family Buje had exercised the power of the khalifat, under the title of Emir-ol-umera, and in the west that of, the Merovingian race had, under the title of maire du palais, passed into the hands of the Carlovingians; so the Atabegs possessed themselves of boundless authority, and raised themselves into dynasties. The principal are, besides that of the Atabegs of Irak, that of Aserbijan, that of Fars, called also the family of Salgar, and that of Loristan; all of which, in the short space of five years, made their claims to unlimited rule available.139

Within this period, disappeared the reigning families of Kakuye, in Fars;140 that of the sons of Togteghin, at Damascus;141 the family Nedshah, in Yemen;142 and that of the Gurides in Khorassan;143 in whose stead arose the Seliki, as kings of Erzroum, and the Eyoubides, as princes of Emessa; and, three years before the death of Sandjar, the mightiest prince of his time, a still more mighty one was born,144 Jengis Khan, the scourge of the east and the west, who afterwards converted the most fertile territories into a wilderness, and bathed the deserts with streams of blood.

Cotemporaneously with the last ten years of Salgar’s reign in the east in Khorassan, Nureddin Mohammed Ben Amadeddin Sengi, Lord of the Irak Atabegs, ruled in Syria, as one of the greatest princes of the east. He was a cotemporary of Salgar, and the most powerful opponent of the Crusaders; whose historians, unceasingly employed in detailing the mischief which he caused them, cannot refuse him the just praise of his great and noble qualities. “Nureddin,” says the learned William, bishop of Tyre, a man profoundly versed in history, “was a prudent, discreet man, who feared God according to the faith of his people; fortunate and an increaser of his paternal inheritance.”145 His budding power sorely oppressed that of the Christians; whose conquests put a term and measure to his. Raymond, Prince of Antioch, and Gosselin, Count of Tripoli, fell as the trophies of his victories; the first at the siege of Anab,146 on the battle field; the second, as he was proceeding to the chase, from his residence, Telbasher,147 was taken prisoner by a foraging party of Turcomans. The castles of Telbasher, Antab, Asas, Ravendan, Tellkhaled, Karss, Kafsrud, Meraash, and Nehrelhus,148 fell into the victors’ hands, with considerable booty.

Nureddin, as possessor of Mossul and Aleppo, was, in fact, the lord of northern Syria; but in the southern, he still wanted Damascus as a point d’appui for his rule. Here Mejereddin Abak,149 the last of the Seljukides of Damascus, reigned; or, rather, with his name and with unlimited power, his vizier, Moineddin Ennar.150 Twice had Nureddin invested it with his besieging army; at length, the inhabitants, dreading to fall under the dominion of the Crusaders, summoned him to their assistance. Mejereddin retired willingly, and received in exchange, first Emessa, then Balis, and afterwards went to Bagdad. Nureddin, having obtained Damascus, raised it from the ruin caused by an earthquake, and chose it as his metropolis; adorning it with mosques, academies, libraries, hospitals, baths, and fountains. As Melekshah, the great prince of the Seljukides, had been the first to establish a high school (Medresse) at Bagdad, so Nureddin founded at Damascus, the first theological school (Darol-hadiss), where the traditions of the prophet were treated of.

With the constant practice of the two most splendid oriental princely virtues, liberality and justice, he combined the strictest attention to the duties of Mohammedanism. Just and modest, as Omar Ben Abdolasis, the seventh khalif of the Ommiad family, he was pious and strict, like Omar Ben Khattab, the second successor of the prophet. He wore neither silk nor gold, but cotton and linen; and never expended on his clothes, or nourishment, more than his just lot of the fifth of the booty. He was ever engaged in the “holy war;” either the “lesser,”151 with weapons in his hand, against the enemies of Islam; or the “greater,”152 with fasting and prayer, occupying day and night in political duties and study.

The presents of foreign princes, he caused immediately to be sold, and devoted the proceeds to pious institutions, public buildings, and eleemosynary purposes. Besides presenting large sums annually, to the inhabitants of the holy cities, Mecca and Medina, and the Arabs of the desert, to induce them to allow the caravans of pilgrims to proceed unmolested; he divided, every month, five thousand ducats among the poor. He particularly honoured and rewarded jurisconsults, in whose ranks he was himself inscribed, as he had collected into a particular work, Fakh-rinuri (i. e. glory of light), the traditions of the prophet, relating to justice, alms, and the holy war, as the ground-work of his policy, morals, and discipline. As, during his long reign of twenty-eight years, he conquered more than fifty castles, and established in all the cities of his dominions, mosques and colleges; and had maintained most gloriously, both less and greater war, for Islamism; so history gives him, like his father, Amadeddin Sengi, not only the honorary title Gasi, or victorious, but also that of Shehid, or martyr; because both merited the crown of martyrdom, if not in the field of battle, in that of honour, by their unwearied exercise of princely duties, and martial virtues.153

Religion and policy combined to decide Nureddin in favour of the khalif of Bagdad, against him of Cairo. His inclination to do homage to the former, rather than to the latter, as the successor of the prophet, would find more ready access to his mind, as on account of the great confusion prevailing in Egypt, the time seemed to have arrived for the Atabegs to tear the sceptre from the feeble grasp of the Fatimites. This long shapeless idea of Syrian policy soon received form and existence from the Egyptian civil war, between the two viziers, Dhargham and Shawer, who, under the last of the Fatimites, struggled for mastery.

In the same year154 in which Nureddin had, by one of the most splendid victories, and the conquest of Harem, repaired the great discomfiture which he had received from the Crusaders, four months previously, at Bakia (Boquea), Shawer himself came to Damascus, to promise the third part of the revenues of Egypt, if Nureddin would aid him with arms, against his rival, Dhargham. Nureddin sent the governor of Emessa, Esededdin Shirkuh (i. e. lion of the faith of lion’s mount), of the family Eyub, with an army into Egypt. Dhargham fell in battle; Shawer was restored to his former power, but on refusing to fulfil his promise, the lord of lion’s mount took possession, with his troops, of the eastern province Sherkiye, and the chief town Belbeis. Shawer, the most fickle of viziers, faithless alike to friend and foe, and, by his false policy, a traitor to his army and himself, called Amaury, formerly Count of Askalon, then king of Jerusalem, with the Crusaders, to his assistance, against the general of his ally; he soon, however, repented, and dismissed the Crusaders, with a sum of sixty thousand ducats.155

In the meanwhile, Esededdin, being reinforced with fresh troops, advanced against Cairo, and defeated the khalif at Ashmunind, and remained master of Upper Egypt, at the same time that his nephew, Yusuf, took Alexandria, and maintained himself there valiantly, for three months, against the combined besieging forces of the Egyptians and the Crusaders. At the end of this period peace was concluded; Nureddin receiving, as compensation, an annual sum of fifty thousand ducats, and the Crusaders, one hundred thousand, out of the revenues of Egypt.156 There remained, moreover, at Cairo, a general of the Crusaders, with some thousands of men, as a garrison and protection against Nureddin’s enterprises.

These advantages accorded to the king of Jerusalem, in the metropolis of Egypt, tempted him to a rupture of the peace, with the hope of becoming master of the whole country. Persuaded by the knights-hospitallers, whose grand-master hoped to maintain his order, in the possession of Belbeis, which, in warlike preparations, he had charged with a debt of more than one hundred thousand ducats, Amaury advanced with an army against Egypt. The Templars, however, refused to participate in the expedition, either from real displeasure at the rupture of the peace, or, what is more probable, from jealousy of the knights of St. John, and other hidden grounds of their mysterious policy.157

In this predicament, Shawer applied to Nureddin, for assistance against the Crusaders, who had already158 made an irruption into Egypt, had taken Belbeis, and were besieging the capital. New Cairo was surrounded with a wall, at which women and children laboured with untired zeal, day and night. The more ancient part of the city, Missr, usually, but incorrectly, called Old Cairo, was set on fire, by command of Shawer, and burned for fifty-four days. The Khalif Adhad despatched couriers with urgent letters to Syria, imploring the aid and assistance of Nureddin against the infidel; and to depict the highest grade of his necessity, he enclosed locks of his wives’ hair, as if to say, “Help! help! the enemy is dragging our women from us by the hair of their heads.”159 Nureddin was, at that time, at Aleppo, and Esededdin Shirkuh, at Emessa, his government. Nureddin immediately intrusted him with the conduct of the Egyptian campaign; and gave him for the execution of it, two hundred thousand ducats, and a chosen body of eight thousand men, six thousand of which were Syrians, and the remainder Turcomans. In the meanwhile, Shawer and Amaury, both on the brink of despair, entered into negociations; the latter for the possession, the former for the relief, of Cairo. Shawer promised, in the name of the khalif, the enormous sum of a million of ducats, and the king was glad to receive fifty thousand ready money.160 On this, the Crusaders retired, when the Syrians, under the conduct of Esededdin, appeared before Cairo.

The khalif, accompanied by the chief officers of his court, repaired to the camp, and complained bitterly of the excessive power of Shawer, who, merely on his own account, had invited the Franks into the country, committed Missr to the flames, and desolated the land; and entreated Esededdin Shirkuh for his vizier’s head, being himself too powerless to secure it. The latter soon became aware of the danger which threatened his life, and resolved to make away with Esededdin, together with his nephew, and the princes of his court, under the pretext of an invitation to a banquet. The project was, however, betrayed; and the intended victim retorted on the guilty head of Shawer, which was sent to the khalif. Nureddin immediately stepped into Shawer’s place, as vizier and Emir-ol-juyush, with the title of Almelek-al-mansur (i. e. the victorious king); and as he died sixty-five days afterwards, his nephew, Yusuf Salaheddin (i. e. Joseph, justness of faith), was invested with the same high dignities of the empire, and received the honorary designation, Almalek-ennassir (i. e. conquering king). He was the founder of the dynasty of the Eyubites; his greatness, like his name, smoothed, and diminished by the western historians, is more familiar to Europeans, than that of many other great princes and conquerors of the east, at whose names and deeds European languages and manners recoil.

The Syrian heroes of the Crusades have been celebrated by the Christians in Europe, and the latter by the former in Asia. Amadeddin Sengi, Nureddin, and Salaheddin, appear in European chronicles of the Crusades, as Sanguin, Noradin, and Saladin; while in the Moslem annals, the count of Tripoli, the prince of Antioch, and the king of Jerusalem, are masked under the names of Comis, Birias, and Rei. In the following book, we shall have an opportunity of mentioning Salaheddin’s exploits more at large; as yet he appears as the khalif’s vizier, and Nureddin’s general, in whose name he administered the government of Egypt; he caused the name of his master the Atabeg, to be mentioned in the public prayers on Friday, after that of the khalif.

Nureddin thought the opportunity was now arrived to destroy the khalifat of the Fatimites, and to deprive the last of them of even the shadow of power. He commanded his lieutenant, Salaheddin, to fill up all judicial offices, which had hitherto been held by Imamis or Ismailis, with lawyers of the orthodox sect of the Shafiites, and in the public prayers to name the Abbaside khalif, Almostanssar-biemrillah, instead of the Fatimite Adhad-lidinillah. Salaheddin delayed the fulfilment of these commands, as the people almost universally were of the sects, Rafedhi and Shii, and still hung to the phantom of the Fatimite khalifat: the last representative of that race, however, Adhad-lidinillah, very opportunely falling sick and dying,161 Salaheddin immediately transferred the royal prerogative of prayer on Friday, from the name of the khalif of Cairo, to that of the khalif of Bagdad, after whom, Nureddin, the Atabeg of Syria, was named.

Thus, Salaheddin executed, more, indeed, for his own than Nureddin’s interest, though still in the latter’s name, the great stroke, by which the main trunk of the western Ismailites was overthrown; after having budded for more than two hundred years, and transplanted itself into Asia, in the branch of the eastern Ismailites, or Assassins. The throne, which the secret doctrine of the Ismailites wished to establish on the ruins of all others, was overturned, and buried the lodge of Cairo in its ruins. The khalifat of the Abbasides prevailed over that of the family of Ali, for which the envoys of the Ismailites preached and intrigued; and the phantom, in whose name they had deluded the people, vanished from the earth: an event of great magnitude, and rich in consequences; important in the history of the east, and more especially in that of the Assassins, to whom, Salaheddin, whose dominion rose on the ruins of the Egyptian khalifat, appeared a powerful and dangerous foe.

END OF BOOK III.


  1. A. D. 1126; A. H. 520.
  2. Mirkhond.
  3. A. D. 1127; A. H. 521.
  4. Takwimet-tevarikh.
  5. Mirkhond.
  6. A. D. 1128; A. H. 522.
  7. Mirkhond.
  8. A. D. 1129; A. H. 524.
  9. Takwimet-tevarikh.
  10. A. D. 1131; A. H. 526.
  11. Mirkhond.
  12. Mirkhond.
  13. Abulfeda, a. 523.
  14. Jehannumma, p. 559.
  15. A. D. 1128; A. H. 523.
  16. Kemaleddin and Ibn Forat; the latter calls the vizier Mardeghani Mardekani; and the prince of Aleppo, Bure instead of Busi.
  17. Abulfeda, a. 523. Wilhel. Tyr. XIII. 25.
  18. A. D. 1118.
  19. Anton, Versuch einer Geschichte des Tempelherrenordens. p. 10-15
  20. A. D. 1129; A. H. 524.
  21. Wilken, Geschichte der Kreuzzüge. II. p. 566.
  22. The crown of kings.
  23. Justini Epitome, l. xxiv. c. 8.
  24. A. D. 1129; A. H. 524.
  25. A. D. 1132; A. H. 527.
  26. Wilken Geschichte der Kreuzzüge, II. p. 612.
  27. Dispenser of fortune.
  28. Abulfeda, ad an. 520.
  29. A. D. 1126; A. H. 520.
  30. Wilken, II. p. 531; after Kemaleddin.
  31. A. D. 1127; A. H. 521.
  32. Ibn Forat.
  33. A. D. 1130; A. H. 525.
  34. Abulfeda, ad ann. 525.
  35. Abulfeda, ad ann. 529.
  36. Mirkhond.
  37. The command according to the command of God.
  38. Abulfeda, ann. 524.
  39. Wilken Geschichte der Kreuzzüge, 11, p. 593; after Renandot.
  40. A. D. 1134; A. H. 529.
  41. Abulfeda, ann. 529.
  42. A. D. 1134; A. H. 529. A. D. 1138; A. H. 533.
  43. A. D. 1140; A. H. 535.
  44. Mirkhond and Abulfeda.
  45. Mirkhond.
  46. Mirkhond.
  47. A. D. 1092; A. H. 485.
  48. A. D. 1107; A. H. 501.
  49. D’Herbelot, after Ghaffari and others.
  50. A. D. 1150; A. H. 545.
  51. A. D. 1151; A. H. 546. Devletshah art. Enweri, Ferideddin Katib, and Sabir.
  52. The Atabegs of Aserbijan, A. D. 1145; A. H. 540; those of Fars, A. D. 1148; A. H. 543; those of Loristan, A. D. 1150; A. H. 545. (Takwimet tevarikh.)
  53. A. D. 1142; A. H. 537.
  54. A. D. 1154; A. H. 549.
  55. A. D. 1158; A. H. 553.
  56. A. D. 1160; A. H. 555.
  57. A. D. 1154; A. H. 549.
  58. Gesta Dei per Francos, p. 893.
  59. A. D. 1148; A. H. 543. Nepa, p. 915.
  60. Nokhbetet-tevarikh.
  61. A. D. 1151; A. H. 546. Turbessel, Hamtab, Hazart, Rarendel, Gesta Dei, &c. p. 920.
  62. Mejereddin, G. D. p. 893.
  63. Miheneddin Ainardus (ibidem).
  64. Jihad ol assghar.
  65. Jihad ol ekbar.
  66. From the Nokhbetet-tevarikh of Mohammed Effendi, after the Akdol-jemen, (i. e. coral necklace); the Kamil (i. e. the complete) of Ibn Essir, and the Miret-ol-edvar, or mirror of ages.
  67. A. D. 1162; A. H. 558.
  68. According to the Nokhbetet-tevarikh; according to the Gesta Dei, two hundred thousand paid down, and as much promised.
  69. According to the Nokhbetet-tevarikh; according to the Gesta Dei, two hundred thousand ready money, and as much promised.
  70. Gesta Dei, p. 978.
  71. A. D. 1168; A. H. 564.
  72. Nokhbetet-tevarikh.
  73. Here again the Nokhbetet-tevarikh gives exactly half the sum mentioned by William of Tyre, according to whom, the khalif promised two millions, and paid one hundred thousand ducats. Gesta Dei, p. 979.
  74. A. D. 1171; A. H. 567.