Popes Bling Hits The Auction Block
Two prized pieces once owned by Pope Paul VI are up for sale.
A piece of history worth more than a million dollars is about to hit the auction block.
The diamond, emerald and gold cross and diamond ring that Pope Paul VI gave to the United Nations during his historic 1963 trip to America will be displayed at Perry's Emporium in Wilmington, North Carolina next week.
Together, the two pieces are valued at $1.2 million dollars.
The cross has 12 large diamonds (approximately 60 carats), 189 smaller diamonds and 89 emeralds.
The large stone in the center of the ring is 12.75 carats and it has red ruby crosses on the sides.
The cross and ring were originally made in the late 1800's for Pope Pius XII.
According to documents from the United Nations, Pope Paul VI, who was the first Pope to visit the U.S., gave the cross and ring to the U.N. on the condition that the organization use it to "alleviate human suffering."
The U.N. auctioned the cross and ring in 1967.
The auction brought in $64,000, which was given to the United Nations Children's Fund, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees, and the Freedom-from-Hunger Campaign of the Food and Agriculture Organization.
Since then, it has changed hands a few times.
Evel Knievel reportedly owned it and wore it on the "Tonight Show with Johnny Carson".
The current owner of the cross and ring asked Alan Perry, who owns Perry's Emporium, to sell the items.
Perry wouldn't disclose the identity of the current owner.
Before selling the items, Perry plans to put them on display at his store.
The cross and ring will be on display in the store April 14-16 and April 19-23.
Then, Perry plans to sell them on eBay to the highest bidder.