The Syrian Ismailis

In the meantime, Amir Ismail bin Ahmad of Kadmus, the local Ismaili leader in Syria, had been permitted by the Ottoman authorities to settle permanently with his people in an area east of the Orontes river. These arrangements were evidently confirmed by a decree of Sultan Abdul Majid I (1255-1277/1839-1861), dated Shaban, 1265/July, 1849. Amir Ismail bin Muhammad chose the ruins of Salamia as the site of his new Ismaili settlement. In 1266/1850, the Ottomans granted a further favour to the Ismaili settlers and exempted them from military conscription and taxation. An increasing number of Ismailis from the western mountains gradually joined the original settlers in Salamia, attracted by the prospect of receiving free land in a district where they would furthermore be neither taxed nor conscripted. By 1277/1861, it had become a large village.

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