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Alamut (Persian: الموت) is a region in Iran including western and eastern parts in the western edge of the Alborz (Elburz) range, between the dry and barren plain of Qazvin in the south and the densely forested slopes of the Mazandaran province in the north. Starting from Qazvin toward Alamut, passing through the first range of hills, curvatures, forms, are significant themes in nature's composition of this area. The famous Ismaili castle of Alamut and numerous others are in this area, which served as the heartland of the state founded by Hassan-i Sabbah.[1]


Alamut (Persian: الموت),[2] historically known as Rudbar (رودبار) or Rudbar of Alamut (رودبار الموت Rūdbār-i Alamūt), named after the Shahrud river.

More precisely, Alamut is a small region in the historical Rudbar in which the namesake castle is located.[3]


In 1090 CE, Hassan-i Sabbah, the leader of the Assassins, a sect of Nizari Ismailis in Iran, chose the Alamut region as his headquarters to campaign, preach and convert new followers. This proved to be a turning point for the destiny of Alamut Valley. The result of over two centuries of Ismailite stronghold, the region witnessed numerous castles throughout, of which at least 20 "castles" dating back to this era have been identified. The most magnificent castle in the Alamut Valley is the Alamut Castle, which is built on top of a high rock reaching 2163 m above sea level near the Gazor Khan Village. The rock is 200 m high and covers an area of 20 hectares (49 acres); with its steep slope and deep and dangerous ravine, the rock is practically inaccessible and forms a part of the fort’s structure. Currently, only ruins of the fort and some towers are apparent, and it is only through archaeological excavation that the main portions can be discovered.[4]

Lords of Alamut Castle who ruled the Nizārī Ismā'īlī state from Alamūt[edit]

The President of Nizārī Ismā'īlī state Period Master of Alamūt
The First Da'i Hasan bin Sabbah 1090-1124 1. Effendi/Lord
The Second Da'i Kiya Buzurg-Ummid 1124-1138 2. Effendi/Lord
The Third Da'i Muḥammad ibn Kiyā Buzurg-Ummīd 1138-1162 3. Effendi/Lord
23rd Imām Hasan ‘Alā Dhīkr‘īhī’s-Salām 1162-1166 4. Effendi/Lord
24th Imām Nūr al-Dīn Muhammad 1166-1210 5. Effendi/Lord
25th Imām Jalāl al-Dīn Hasan 1210-1221 6. Effendi/Lord
26th Imām ‘Alā’a-d-Dīn Muḥammad III 1221-1255 7. Effendi/Lord
27th Imām Rukn al-Din Khurshah 1255-1256 The state ended

Today, the leader of the contemporary Ismaili community is the Aga Khan.

Alamut rulers[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Alamut
  2. ^ Also transliterated as Alamūt, Alemūt, Alamoot, Alemoot
  3. ^ B. Hourcade, “ALAMŪT,” Encyclopædia Iranica, I/8, pp. 797-801; an updated version is available online at (accessed on 17 May 2014).
  4. ^ Alamut Castle (Eagle’s Nest): Hassan Sabbah Stronghold

Further reading[edit]

  • Daftary, Farhad (2007). "Alamūt". In Fleet, Kate; Krämer, Gudrun; Matringe, Denis; Nawas, John; Rowson, Everett (eds.). Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE. Brill Online. ISSN 1873-9830.

Coordinates: 36°26′41″N 50°35′11″E / 36.44472°N 50.58639°E / 36.44472; 50.58639