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Ibn Battuta also acknowledges the importance of the Nile river to all of Egypt, including Cairo, as he often traveled via boat to arrive at Cairo and to leave to continue his journey.

The Nile was not just a means for transportation, it was the source of a plethora of other tangibles as well.

The city's metropolitan area is one of the largest in Africa, the largest in the Middle East and 15th-largest in the world, and is associated with ancient Egypt, as the famous Giza pyramid complex and the ancient city of Memphis are located in its geographical area.

However, in 1168 the Fatimids under the leadership of vizier Shawar set fire to Fustat to prevent Cairo's capture by the Crusaders.

While the Fustat fire successfully protected the city of Cairo, a continuing power struggle between Shawar, King Amalric I of Jerusalem, and the Zengid general Shirkuh led to the downfall of the Fatimid establishment.

In 1250, slave soldiers, known as the Mamluks, seized control of Egypt and like many of their predecessors established Cairo as the capital of their new dynasty.

In 905, the Abbasids re-asserted control of the country and their governor returned to Fustat, razing al-Qatta'i to the ground.

which was to serve as the new capital of the caliphate.

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