(Arab. hashashin, hashish eaters). Secret politico-religious Muslim sect of the Shi'ites*; founded 1090; flourished in Syria and Persia until suppressed in 13th c. Became terror by practicing assassination. Head, Old Man of the Mountain, had assassins drugged with hashish, intoxicating extract of hemp, before sending them on their murderous missions.
Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
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