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Tupac’s gold, diamond, ruby ring, worn before his death, fetched over $1 million at auction

Tupac Shakur’s unique crown-shaped ring, which he had on just days before he passed away, broke the record for the highest money ever paid for a hip-hop artifact at auction on Tuesday when it sold for almost $1.02 million.

According to a statement from the auction house, the ring was sold as part of a sizable auction of hip-hop memorabilia, including a demo tape for Assata Shakur’s hit “Trapped,” autographed letters from Shakur, and other items. The ring was anticipated to fetch between $200,000 and $300,000 at auction.

The lots contained memorabilia from a number of other well-known artists, like Mos Def, De La Soul, and Wu-Tang Clan, to name a few. They were reportedly created to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the musical genre.

The 14-Karat gold ring has an engraving on the side that reads “Pac & Dada 1996″—a tribute to his engagement to actress Kidada Jones—and is covered with diamonds and rubies.

The artist’s godmother, Yaasmyn Fula, submitted the ring for auction, telling Sotheby’s that Pac had it custom-made and had jewellers in New York City put it together after he spent months in prison and had just secured a contract with Death Row Records.

According to the statement, Tupac’s godmother, Fula, noted that the artiste based his design on the crowns of the medieval kings of Europe in “an act of self-coronation”, a celebration of survival through a turbulent year in an often-turbulent life. This reflects his recent affinity for Niccolo Machiavelli’s political manifesto “The Prince” (Tupac would start going by “Makaveli” after reading The Prince while incarcerated).

The ring was also visible on his finger when he attended the MTV Video Music Awards on September 4, 1996, which was his final appearance in public before his sad death in Las Vegas three days later.

While looking into the still-unsolved murder of Shakur, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department recently carried out a search warrant at the residence of Duane Keith Davis.

As reported by CBS News, Police reportedly gathered a “desktop and laptop computer, a copy of the book “Compton Street Legends,” a copy of an issue of Vibe magazine featuring Tupac, photographs”, and other papers.

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