Definition of assassin in English:

assassin

noun

  • 1A person who murders an important person for political or religious reasons.

    • ‘We also give the name of the assassin who attempted three days ago to murder an SEP member.’
    • ‘She knew now he was not sleeping, and had been murdered by the assassins who lay dead on her floor.’
    • ‘The combination of the assassins, of time, of blame, and his own inevitable errors mean that someone else must take on the job.’
    • ‘From his comment, Flynn obviously knew the reason why his assassin was there.’
    • ‘However, I was an assassin, trained to kill with or without a good reason.’
    • ‘Police believe the victim may not have even seen the assassin who murdered him with a single shot to the back.’
    • ‘The real targets of these laws will not be bomb throwers or assassins.’
    • ‘She seeks revenge upon the other assassins with whom she worked.’
    • ‘One of the assassins was traced to the village of Lidice which was to pay a terrible price for having one of its townsfolk involved in this killing.’
    • ‘Cyanide is a colourless, lethal, water-soluble poison occasionally used by mafia assassins.’
    • ‘Both presidents were assassinated in office and both assassins used their middle names for preference.’
    • ‘It's unlikely a professional assassin would have shown his face or made a getaway on foot.’
    • ‘He would like to deny that history which depicts Turks as assassins, or apportion blame to the Armenians.’
    • ‘The men who were on the terrace were obviously not the actual assassins.’
    • ‘This particular guild was a home to 75 of the best thieves, assassins and cut throats in Europe.’
    • ‘After all, the assassins are willing to kill and wound hundreds to get one man.’
    • ‘He was murdered under mysterious circumstances; the assassin has never been found.’
    • ‘The assassin hadn't killed him yet - that was important given the skill this man had.’
    • ‘It focuses brilliantly on political intrigue and high stakes and assassins and crumbling empires.’
    • ‘Paramilitary assassins used live ammunition and shot to the head.’
    murderer, killer, executioner, gunman, butcher, slaughterer, liquidator, exterminator, terminator
    hitman, contract man, hired gun
    button man
    slayer
    homicide
    View synonyms
  • 2AssassinA member of the Nizari branch of Ismaili Muslims at the time of the Crusades, when the newly established sect ruled part of northern Persia (1094–1256). They were renowned as militant fanatics, and were popularly reputed to use hashish before going on murder missions.

    • ‘The Crusaders mistook the Nizaris' association with political murder with hashish addiction and spawned the Assassins legend.’
    • ‘In the 11 th century in the Middle East the Shiite sect known as the Assassins would eat hashish before murdering civilian foes.’
    • ‘The Muslim Cult of Assassins of the 12th and 13th centuries, like the Jewish Zealots of the 1st, have been enrolled for this genealogical purpose.’
    • ‘In June, the Sultan had an Assassin try to murder Prince Edward.’
    • ‘In November 1126, he was stabbed to death by an Assassin.’

Origin

Mid 16th century: from French, or from medieval Latin assassinus, from Arabic ḥašīšī hashish-eater.

Pronunciation

assassin

/əˈsasɪn/