An emirate is a political territory that is ruled by an emir, a dynastic Arab Monarch. The word emirate or amirate comes from Arabic: إمارة, Imaarah ; plural: إمارات, Imaraat. The United Arab Emirates is a federal state of seven federal emirates, each administered by a hereditary emir, these seven elect the federation's President and Prime Minister. Most emirates have either disappeared or become part of a larger modern state, some changed their rulers' title, e.g. to Malik (Arabic for King) or Sultan. Therefore true emirate-states have become rare.
In Arabic the term can be generalized to mean any province of a country that is administered by a member of the ruling class, especially of a member of the royal family, as in Saudi Arabian governorates.