Kelly Clarkson purchased a ring that once belonged to early 19th century novelist Jane Austen at an auction, but won’t ever get to wear it.

Clarkson dished out $250,000 d – over five times the reserve price – for the gold and turquoise ring at a London auction, reported the BBC. The famous Austen fangirl outbid the Jane Austen’s House Museum, but United Kingdom's culture minister Ed Vaizey put an export ban on the historic piece of jewelry until Sept. 30.

Following the export ban, a Bring the Ring Home campaign was launched by the Jane Austen’s House Museum. Donations flooded into the campaign, including one from an anonymous donor for 100,000 pounds (roughly $160,000). By Monday, the campaign had raised the 100,000 pounds (about $250,000) needed to keep the ring at the Jane Austen’s House Museum.

Clarkson handled the disappointment with grace and is complying with the campaign’s request that she return the ring in exchange for the sum she paid for it, reported ABC News. “The ring is a beautiful national treasure and I am happy to know that so many Jane Austen fans will get to see it at Jane Austen's House Museum," the American Idol alum said in a statement.


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England’s export ban was instated roughly 60 years ago and can be applied to a variety of items that are bought from outside the country that are worth more than a certain amount. It has been called “a last chance to save treasures like these for the nation” by Vaizey in a statement.

The Jane Austen’s House Museum is situated within the home of the iconic writer, which she resided in from 1775 until her death at age 41 in 1817. Her works include Pride and Prejudice, Emma and Sense and Sensibility.

– Chelsea Regan

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