Medieval Nizari Ismaili missionary in Syria. He reorganized the Nizari community in Syria and played a prominent role in the regional politics of his time, entering into shifting alliances with Salah al-Din (Saladin), the Crusaders, and others to safeguard the independence of his community. Sinan was the original 'Old Man of the Mountain' of the Crusaders, who made the Nizari Ismailis famous in medieval Europe as the Assassins together with a number of fictional tales regarding their secret practices. An outstanding organiser and statesman, Sinan led the Syrian Nizaris for some three decades, to the peak of their power, until his death.
This article by was originally published in The Oxford Dictionary of Islam, 2004.
Co-Director and Head of the Department of Academic Research and Publications
An authority in Shi'i studies, with special reference to its Ismaili tradition, Dr. Daftary has published and lectured widely in these fields of Islamic studies. In 2011 a Festschrift entitled Fortresses of the Intellect was produced to honour Dr. Daftary by a number of his colleagues and peers.