Why did warships often accompany merchant ships sailing in the colony?

During the colonial wars, sea trade became widespread. Large sea vessels filled with valuable cargo had to travel long distances from South America or Africa to Europe. In this connection, at that time piracy arose, because of which merchant ships suffered greatly. With the passage of time, merchants began to be escorted by warships (naturally for a monetary reward) in order to stop pirate attempts to rob them.

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