Tupac designed the gold ring encrusted with rubies and diamonds, and wore it during his final public appearance in the 1996 VMAs.
The world remembers Tupac Shakur—simply known as 2Pac or Makaveli—as one of the most inimitable voices in hip-hop history. His influence has left an indelible mark on the music industry; many fans mourned over his untimely death in 1996, when an unknown gunman shot the actor and rapper in Las Vegas, leaving the general public shocked.
Despite the massive hole Tupac left in the music industry upon his death, the rapper’s legacy remains, even in tangible form. Sotheby’s New York will be auctioning his hefty gold ring later in July, according to a recent announcement. The auction house is selling the piece—which may fetch $300,000 (£230,000)—in celebration of hip-hop’s 50th anniversary.
A Symbol of Responsibility
The large gold ring sports a ‘crown’ encrusted with glittering diamonds and rubies. Tupac designed and commissioned it alongside a medallion for his media conglomerate, Euphanasia Incorporated.
Perhaps the most interesting thing about the accessory, besides its glamor, is what it stands for. Tupac created it when he was entering a new period in his life, doing away with his “Thug Life” persona after serving time in prison.
“That ring is a powerful symbol,” shared Yaasmyn Fula, the rapper’s godmother, in Sotheby’s announcement video. “Whoever wore that ring had to accept that they have a responsibility to have an impact on the world.”
“Tupac thought of himself and his creativity as a tool of expressing injustice and love. That message has been carried on with a lot of artists to this day that give him acknowledgement and say how much he inspired them,” she added in another statement.
The Search Continues
While the circumstances behind his death remain unsolved, police recently conducted a search in his Las Vegas home on July 17, 2023 as part of an ongoing investigation.
Tupac was riding in the passenger seat of a BMW 750 Sedan driven by Marion “Suge” Knight on September 7, 1996, after he attended a boxing match. A white Cadillac pulled up beside their car, its rider opening fire and shooting Tupac multiple times. The perpetrators injured Knight with shrapnel from the shots, but the hospital discharged him the following day. Tupac, on the other hand, sustained serious injuries that required heavy operations. The rapper passed away after six days in the hospital.
Though the police haven’t filed charges, they hope to identify the gunman and his accomplice as they continue to look for more clues, according to a report from ABC News.
Banner photo from the Sotheby’s website.