Rapper Drake recently revealed that he is the new owner of the late Tupac Shakur’s crown ring. The rapper shared that he purchased the ring at an auction for over $1 million last week.
The winning bid was well above Sotheby’s pre-sale estimate of between $200,000 and $300,000 and becomes the most valuable hip-hop artefact ever sold, the auction house said.
The New York-born rapper wore the ring during his final public appearance at the MTV Video Music Awards on September 4, 1996.
Drake confirmed that he purchased the ring by posting a photo of it on an Instagram story. Sotheby’s also confirmed the news to CBS News in a news release that the Grammy award-winning rapper is the crown ring’s new owner.
Shakur was shot dead by an unidentified assailant in a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas just days later on September 13. He was 25.
Shakur, whose hits included “California Love,” designed the ring over the course of a few months, Sotheby’s said.
He did so through his godmother Yaasmyn Fula, who put the ring up for sale.
Shakur was influenced by 16th-century Italian philosopher Niccolo Machiavelli’s political manifesto “The Prince” which he read while in prison on sex abuse charges.
He modelled the design on the crowns of the medieval kings of Europe, Sotheby’s added.
The ring is engraved “Pac & Dada 1996,” a reference to his girlfriend Kidada Jones.
A gold circulate studded with a central cabochon ruby flanked by two pave-cut diamonds sits atop a diamond-encrusted gold band.
The sale was part of a dedicated hip-hop auction to mark 50 years of the genre which falls in August this year.
Shakur is considered one of the greatest rappers of all time, selling 75 million records.
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