The Assassin's Creed series has long departed from its original origins of the Assassin-Templar War. The next part will generally be about the Vikings. We have no doubt that Ubisoft will come up with something cool, and we hope that it will have something to do with the story of the killers in the hood. In the meantime, let's dive into the real past and look at the history of real assassins.
Many wondered if the assassins were real - the answer is yes. However, they were better known by a different nickname and often dabbled in drugs.
Sweet little sect
The history of the Assassins, who were actually called Hashashins, dates back to the harsh Middle Ages in the Middle East. Hasan ibn Sabbah was their spiritual leader and founder. He was a preacher who gathered around him a larger number of like-minded people, admirers and followers. In 1090, Hasan captured the Alamut fortress, a number of nearby villages and cities. Over time, it all turned into one small state.
His followers - the Nizari were practically sectarians, ready to die in order to preach throughout the east of his teachings. One day his students had to kill the Maujin, who threatened to hand them over to the local authorities, but they found out about the murder [what an irony]. One of the students was caught, and the local vizier Nizam al-Mulka ordered to kill him with a painful death in revenge, and then drag the body around the city and hang in the main market square.
Among the population of Alamut, this caused outrage, people turned to their leader. Hassan said that killing this vizier would be more pleasant than heavenly bliss. A young man named Bu Tahir Arrani volunteered to fulfill this mission even at the cost of his life. He successfully fulfilled his assignment, but he was torn apart by the guards. At this time, several more of Hasan's people surrounded Nizam's palace and set it on fire.
The assassination of the vizier caused a great resonance in the Islamic world. After that incident, Hasan ibn Sabbah decided to create his own squad of professional assassins who defended his ideas, and also demonstratively killed people of a certain political weight. Hasan himself became the ideological mentor of his newly formed Order.
Thousands of years before Project Defeat
In order for the killers to fulfill their mission well, they had to go through a series of trials and grueling training. Alamut fortress has become such a school of assassins. Joining the order was not an easy task. Out of about two hundred candidates, dozens became Hashashins.
First, I had to sit under the gates of the fortress for several days. So those who did not know how to wait were eliminated. Adepts who were able to withstand this ended up in the courtyard, where they had to wait a few more days lying on the cold floor. Nobody forbade leaving, so only those who really were the most diligent and fought the desire to leave entered the house.
After that, long trainings began, where Hassan's adherents learned to handle all types of weapons, shoot a bow, throw knives, and also fight hand-to-hand. Hasan borrowed various techniques of fighting with his bare hands from the Far East, mainly from China, and taught this to his students. Also, the future killers studied theatrical art, as they had to master reincarnation. The Order did not have a collection of faces like in "Game of Thrones", it had to learn to pretend to be different people and to act out the poor, the rich, merchants, monks and other members of society. But most often the poor.
No hashish, only opium
If you think that consciousness and drug experimentation is a hallmark of 70s America, you are wrong. In order to subdue the minds of his followers and make them sacredly believe in their mission, Hasan did not hesitate to use different methods of manipulating drugs and a sense of faith.
In total, the Hashashins had nine ranks of enlightenment. The transition to a new rank was accompanied by a "magical" ritual of opening consciousness, and a visit to the supposedly paradise Eden, which the warrior will enter after death.
It is mistakenly believed that all candidates who endured waiting in front of the gates and in the common courtyard were then intoxicated with hashish, which gave rise to the name of their sect "hashashin" [or "hashishin"]. However, they began to be called "hashishayna" only in 1122, which translates as "herb-eaters", hinting at their poverty and harsh asceticism.
The very word assassin, which in English means "murderer" came from French, and that in turn from Arabic. According to another version, it comes from the Persian language from the word "asasan". This translates as "adherent of the main path" again alluding to the poverty of members of the order, consisting of the poor, who needed at least some kind of reference in life.
Back to drugs. In the rituals, the opium poppy was used, which immersed the member of the Order in a long narcotic sleep, where he saw all sorts of heavenly sectarian things. Sometimes women whispered something into the intoxicated ear, saying that he could get here only if he died heroically. Naturally, the man of that time sincerely believed in what he was shown and was ready to throw himself into the arms of death at the click.
In general, the spiritual leader liked to manipulate his subordinates. There are reports that when recruits or guests entered his darkened room, they saw a severed head lying on the carpet. In fact, a hashashin was sitting in the pit under him, who, having thrust his head through the hole, pretended to be dead. The leader cast several spells, the head came to life and communicated with the visitor.
He also liked to simulate his death, killing his counterparts and resurrecting the next day.
What about the Templars?
During their existence, the Hashashins managed to make war with everyone and a little bit. What is described in the first part of the game is more like the confrontation between the Syrians and the Crusaders. There is also the Masiaf fortress shown in the game in Syria. The main enemies of the real assassins were the Islamic states. At one time, the Order was able to crush a fairly large part of the Islamic world. And in fact there was a time when they collaborated with the Templars, who during the Crusades carried Christian values to the east. Not a bad historical twist, isn't it?
An important part of their alliance was the money that the crusaders always paid assassins to perform assassinations.
Hasan ibn Sabbah lived for 73 years, but his state existed for about a century, and the peak of his greatness just fell on the period after the death of the leader. But it did not last long. The Order's minions were unable to retain power and control. The state began to be torn apart by internal conflicts and crises.
At the end of the XIII century, the Mongols invaded the eastern lands and easily conquered all areas of Western Persia. Officially, the real Order of the Assassins ceased to exist in 1256 after the fortresses of Alamut and Meimujin fell. All who survived went underground or in the mountains.
Presumably the Assassins moved to India, where the sect of assassins of the Tugi stranglers was actively developing, spreading their influence. It was there that their skills were put to good use.
Alas, the assassins did not use the hidden blades, since such a weapon could not be created with all the desire. They preferred poisoned blades and other weapons with which they could fight normally.
In principle, all over the world, assassins of that time often used battle fans, long blades, sometimes hidden in a cane or other case. In India, weapons such as Qatar were widespread - a blade that was fixed on the entire arm. It is he who can be called the real prototype of the hidden blades in the game. Also in India, stranglers used rumal, a silk scarf that used weights.
By the way, the hashashins did not wear hoods. Most often, their wardrobe was in rags to be invisible in the crowd. But there was a leap of faith, but it was indicative to demonstrate faith [how unexpected]. The people did not know that straw was waiting for them below, and really thought they were jumping to death. True, most often the straw did not save, so they died ... This is the story of real assassins, guys.
The Topic of Article: Real Assassins.