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The famed explorer Balduran was the first noted Faerûnian to explore the sea extensively, returning with wealth enough to build a huge city, a fine ship, and with enough left over to retire comfortably. The sea was named for its numerous pirate attacks upon the shipping route extending from Waterdeep in the north, to Calimshan in the south. Piracy in the region was rampant despite the efforts of the navies of various Sword Coast ports and pirate hunters.
Ships operating in the Sea of Swords often carried trade between the ports of Luskan, Neverwinter, Waterdeep, Baldur's Gate, Athkatla, Murann, Velen, Zazesspur, Myratma, Memnon, and Calimport.