Why in the past were European ships built with high wooden "castles" fore and aft?

to have better view
to manage the deck more easily
to improve ship defense
to improve ship stability
These were built to better resist boarding, commonly used in the naval warfare (especially by pirates). Boarders needed to attack these castles with great difficulty, while archers or harquebusiers could sweep the enemy decks.
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Answers by country

to have better view
to manage the deck more easily
to improve ship defense
to improve ship stability
answers
flagGreece
5%
5%
76%
11%
17
flagSouth Africa
0%
10%
70%
20%
10
flagGermany
11%
2%
61%
25%
36
flagRepublic of Ireland
16%
16%
58%
8%
12
flagthe Netherlands
8%
12%
54%
25%
24
flagCanada
10%
3%
50%
33%
30
flagNew Zealand
16%
3%
46%
33%
65
flagSweden
18%
0%
45%
36%
11
flagPoland
14%
10%
40%
32%
15189
flagthe United Kingdom
19%
7%
38%
34%
154
flagthe United States
16%
9%
35%
36%
436
flagIndia
10%
14%
33%
38%
104
flagthe Philippines
25%
0%
31%
43%
16
flagAustralia
22%
7%
25%
40%
27
flagUnknown
12%
12%
25%
50%
16