Designers / Industry

Tupac Shakur’s Self-Designed Ring Highlights Sotheby’s Hip-Hop Sale


To celebrate the 50th anniversary of hip-hop, Sotheby’s is holding its third dedicated Hip-Hop sale, highlighted by a ring designed and worn by late rapper Tupac Shakur.

Shakur engraved the gold, diamond, and ruby crown ring with “Pac & Dada 1996,” a reference to his engagement to Kidada Jones. Shakur typically wore it in public on his left ring finger, including at his last public appearance, at the MTV Music Awards on Sept. 4, 1996, nine days before he died.

The ring is being sold by Yaasmyn Fula, Shakur’s godmother. It carries a $200,000 to $300,000 estimate.

According to Sotheby’s, the piece reflected Shakur’s affinity for The Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli, and its design was modeled after the crowns of the medieval kings of Europe, in an “act of self-coronation” and to signify Tupac’s desire to take his career to the next level.

The ring’s “crown” sits atop a diamond-encrusted gold band and consists of a gold circlet studded with a cabochon ruby, flanked by two pavé-cut diamonds. The inscription bears the heaviest signs of wear, with the band visibly abraded on the palm-facing left side, likely because it came in daily contact with his pinky ring.

Sotheby’s has been taking bids for the ring for the past week, with today the final day.

(Photo courtesy of Sotheby’s)

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By: Rob Bates

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