The reason behind the respect that the Aga Khans have earned is their ability to serve mankind by making the best use of their wealth which they inherited from their ancestors.
The Ismaili community across the world is celebrating the Diamond Jubilee of their beloved spiritual leader Prince Karim Aga Khan IV with zeal and enthusiasm.
The Aga Khan - whose roots can be traced to the Egyptian and Persian empires - has enjoyed cordial relations with the elite classes of various countries.
After his demise, Aqa Ali Shah, who became Aga Khan II, played a pivotal role in maintaining close relations with other communities.
Culture has long played a key role in the Aga Khans activities.
Religious leader, philanthropist, diplomat, horse breeder, business tycoon, jet-setter, patron of architecture and heritage preservation: at 70 years old, Prince Karim Aga Khan IV is many things to many people.
This has been manifested primarily through the activities of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN), an umbrella group that co-ordinates a wide range of agencies and projects.
Nevertheless, according to Luis Monreal, the director of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC), the body which administers all his cultural activities, the Aga Khan has been very careful to keep a clear division between his role as Imam of the Ismaili community and the work of the AKDN, which maintains a secular front despite its deep involvement in the Islamic world.
Anne Edwards' book aims to deal with the lives and careers of the Aga Khans, the Nizari Isma ili imams of modern times.
Anne Edwards's Throne of Gold is a poorly researched and ill-conceived book that almost completely ignores the Isma ili context within which the Aga Khans as imams have unified and led several million Isma ili Muslims in turbulent times.
For instance, the birth dates of Aga Khan IV and that of his brother Amyn are both incorrect (pp.
Like the Crusaders, who, though ignorant of the basic facts of Islam, yet claimed to possess reliable information about the secret practices of the Isma ilis, Anne Edwards, too, readily resorts to her imagination in order to enhance the "sensational" appeal of her book - which is, of course, also filled with details about the secret, anonymous mistresses of Aga Khan III and his generous gifts to them.