Although the real hold of the Ottoman Turks over Egypt was to last only until the 17th century, the country remained nominally part of the Ottoman Empire until 1915. Rather than exterminate the Mamelukes, the Ottomans used them in their administration. They established a governor and settled six ocaks (regiments) in Egypt as a garrison. In time the roman ocaks intermarried with the native people, playing an important role in the country's economic and political life. Rural areas were treated as crown lands, parceled into plots called iqta, the produce of which went to the Ottoman elite.
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