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The Notorious B.I.G.’s iconic crown sells for almost $600,000 at hip-hop auction

The crown was worn and signed by Biggie shortly before he was killed.

The Notorious B.I.G's iconic plastic crown was sold for almost $600,000 at a hip-hop memorabilia auction in New York yesterday (September 15th).

The crown (pictured above), which was worn and signed by Biggie in a 1997 photoshoot just three days before he was shot and killed in Los Angeles, was one of a number of items to be sold in the auction at  Sotheby's in New York.

Sotheby's anticipated that the crown would sell for between $200,000 and $300,000, but its final bidding price of $594,750 exceeded the auction house's expectations. The New York Post reports that the plastic crown's original retail price was just $6.

"This crown is a novelty item; I bought it at a place on Broadway called Gordon's," Barron Claiborne, the photographer who took the pictures of Biggie in 1997, told the publication. "Without Biggie, the crown would not be worth [six figures]. I only paid six bucks for it."

Other items on sale in the auction included 22 letters written by Tupac Shakur to his high school sweetheart and Salt-N-Pepa's jackets from the 'Push It' music video. 

The hip-hop memorabilia auction, which was initially revealed last month, was the first such public sale to be hosted by Sotheby's. You can find more information about the auction here.