Tupac’s Crown Ring Sells for Over $1M at Auction

AuctionsJul 26, 2023

Tupac’s Crown Ring Sells for Over $1M at Auction

It more than tripled its $300,000 high-end estimate at Sotheby’s hip-hop sale.

This Tupac Shakur gold, ruby and diamond crown ring sold for more than $1 million at Sotheby’s.
According to Sotheby’s, this gold, ruby, and diamond crown ring that belonged to Tupac Shakur is the most expensive bejeweled memento of hip-hop history ever sold.
New York—A ring commissioned and designed by late rapper Tupac Shakur sold for just over $1 million at Sotheby’s online-only hip-hop auction on Tuesday.

According to the auctioneer, it’s the most expensive jewelry artifact related to hip-hop ever sold, more than tripling its $300,000 high-end estimate.  

Worn at the MTV Video Music Awards in 1996 during his final public appearance, the ring marked an important new chapter in Tupac’s life.  

Following a period of incarceration in 1995, Tupac signed a deal with Death Row Records, founded by executives and artists including Dr. Dre, and representing rappers including Snoop Dogg. At the end of that year, Tupac contacted his godmother, advisor, money manager, and caretaker Yaasmyn Fula to outline his plans for the future. 

 Related stories will be right here … 

During the first half of 1996, Tupac launched a media group and community organization called Euphanasia, which Fula headed, and focused on his music, screenwriting projects, and youth outreach programs. 

Working with Fula as his go-between with various New York jewelers, Tupac designed a ring to commemorate all he was working toward. Influenced by Niccolo Machiavelli’s “The Prince,” which he read in prison, as well as European Medieval crowns, Tupac’s crown ring was a symbol of his own “self-coronation,” according to Fula. 

Crafted in gold with diamonds and rubies, an inscription on the outside of the band reads, “Pac & Dada 1996,” to mark the rapper’s engagement to Kidada Jones.
Tupac’s gold, diamond, and ruby crown ring features the inscription “Pac & Dada 1996,” to mark the rapper’s engagement to Kidada Jones. The ring was designed and commissioned in the first half of the year.

Tupac wore the ring on his left ring finger at the VMAs on Sept. 4, 1996. He was shot in a drive-by shooting on Sept. 7 in Las Vegas and eventually succumbed to his injuries on Sept. 13. He was 25 years old. 

Godmother Fula offered Tupac’s ring at the Tuesday Sotheby’s sale.  

In all, the sale featuring original art, historic studio equipment, sneakers, jackets, and archival flyers and posters garnered $1.8 million. 

The sale was Sotheby’s third dedicated to hip-hop and marks what is being referred to as the 50th anniversary of the music genre this year.  

The Latest

Graphic for My Next Question episode on lab-grown diamonds
Recorded WebinarsSep 29, 2023
The Lab-Grown Diamond Market: Where Are We Now?

Watch as Edahn Golan, Sherry Smith and Avi Levy join Michelle Graff to talk pricing and trends in this controversial corner of the market.

692-carat rough diamond from the Karowe Mine
SourcingSep 29, 2023
Lucara Severs Ties With HB Antwerp

The two companies initially partnered during the pandemic and had just signed a 10-year sales agreement in November 2022.

Sonya K. Taylor diamond tennis necklace with tourmaline drop
CollectionsSep 29, 2023
Piece of the Week: Sonya K’s Versatile Necklace

A classic diamond tennis necklace gets a whole lot cooler with a removable pendant.

Brought to you by
Top 5 Ways to Promote Safety and Security Awareness Among Your Staff

Awareness is essential to proactive protection. Learn how to promote and maintain safety and security awareness in your business.

Columbia Gem House Woz Cuts
EditorsSep 28, 2023
The Gemstone World Is In Its Unique Cut Era

Associate Editor Lauren McLemore recently spoke with Columbia Gem House’s Eric Braunwart about the uptick in non-traditional gemstone cuts.

Weekly QuizSep 29, 2023
This Week’s Quiz
Test your jewelry news knowledge with this short test.
Take the Quiz
Pre-Owned Luxury by Rocksbox logo
MajorsSep 28, 2023
Signet-Owned Rocksbox Now Sells Pre-Owned Fine Jewelry

“Pre-Owned Luxury by Rocksbox” offers secondhand jewelry from Kay, Zales, and Jared to members and non-members.

Gold Roman Bracelet from the British Museum
CrimeSep 28, 2023
Have You Seen Jewels Like These? The British Museum Wants to Know

The museum is asking for the public’s help in finding thousands of pieces of ancient gold jewelry and gemstones stolen from a storeroom.

Dialog Solutions
Brought to you by
A Conversation with Dialog Solutions

Do you always want the right diamonds at the right price in your store? Introducing Dialog, the world’s first diamond subscription service.

Pam Waclawski The Kingswood Company
MajorsSep 28, 2023
The Kingswood Co. Names New VP, Wins Award

The company was recognized for one of its private-label, consumer-focused jewelry care lines.

Stock image of rough diamonds from De Beers
SourcingSep 27, 2023
India Calls for 2-Month Moratorium on Rough Diamond Imports

The plea comes against a backdrop of declining demand and falling prices.

Hands pushing a shopping cart
SurveysSep 27, 2023
Consumer Confidence Falls in September Amid Rising Recession Fears

Shoppers also expressed concern about rising prices, higher interest rates, and political uncertainty.

   Platinum Guild International logo
Events & AwardsSep 27, 2023
PGI to Dole Out $500K in Business Grant Program

Participants from the first round of grants saw up to a 900 percent increase in their platinum sales.

Citizen Tsuki-yomi A-T moon phase watch
WatchesSep 26, 2023
Citizen Launches the Tsuki-Yomi A-T Timepiece

According to the watchmaker, it features the first light-powered atomic timekeeping moon phase movement.

Sally Nelson Exclusively Diamonds
IndependentsSep 26, 2023
Sally Nelson, Founder of Exclusively Diamonds, Dies at 86

The former teacher, described as “a pioneer for women-owned businesses,” opened her own jewelry store in 1980.

Crescendo, a 147.96-carat golden citrine by John Dyer for Somewhere In The Rainbow
Events & AwardsSep 26, 2023
2023 Spectrum Awards Entry Deadline Extended

The contest is now open for submissions until Oct. 10.

Instore show logo
Events & AwardsSep 26, 2023
Instore Announces Dates for 2024 Show

The annual event will return to Rosemont, Illinois next August.

Gold holiday gift boxes
SurveysSep 26, 2023
Mastercard Makes Its 2023 Holiday Prediction

According to SpendingPulse, retail sales will increase in November and December but not necessarily for jewelers.

Stock image of hands in handcuffs
CrimeSep 25, 2023
Oregon Jeweler Accused of Selling Lab-Grown Diamonds as Natural

Police say Douglas Wayne Gamble also swapped natural diamonds for synthetic stones and failed to return customers’ repairs.

Neil Lane lab-grown diamond engagement rings for Kay Jewelers
CollectionsSep 25, 2023
Neil Lane’s Latest Collection Uses Lab-Grown Diamonds

The designer just launched a new bridal range at Kay Jewelers.

Yunjo Lee
MajorsSep 25, 2023
Hearts On Fire Taps Mejuri Exec as CCO

Yunjo Lee has also worked on collections for Tiffany & Co. with Paloma Picasso and Frank Gehry.

Steve Levine of Sylvie Jewelry
MajorsSep 25, 2023
Second Generation Takes On New Roles at Sylvie Jewelry

Steve Levine joins the family-owned company, while his brother Gary has a new position.

David Yurman Paris flagship
MajorsSep 22, 2023
David Yurman Alleges These Two Companies Copied Its Designs

The company has filed complaints against Royal Chain and Samuel B.

Yun Yun Sun toi et moi diamond Puzzle ring
TrendsSep 22, 2023
Piece of the Week: Yun Yun Sun’s ‘Puzzle’ Ring

The two-stone style benefits from two-toned metal.

Mineral display at HardRock Summit 2023
Events & AwardsSep 22, 2023
HardRock Summit To Relocate In 2024

The event is moving just outside of Denver.

Timex ReWound video screenshot
WatchesSep 21, 2023
Timex Wants Your Old Watch

The company just rolled out “Timex Rewound,” a new takeback and resale program.

GIA logo
GradingSep 21, 2023
Retailers Warned About Fraudulent Email Purportedly From GIA

The lab confirmed it did not send the message.

Natural Diamond Council brand ambassador Lily James
SourcingSep 21, 2023
Natural Diamond Council’s Latest Campaign With Lily James Is Here

The second installment of “To Treasure Now and Forever” is intended to emphasize diamonds’ versatility.


This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy

Additionally, paste this code immediately after the opening  tag: