Annotated o. henry gift of the magi with in slide questions and writing prompt at end
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Annotated o. henry gift of the magi with in slide questions and writing prompt at end

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This slide presentation explains the O. Henry story "The Gift of the Magi" in detail and includes 10 questions. Perfect for delivery in the classroom, self-study, or homework.

This slide presentation explains the O. Henry story "The Gift of the Magi" in detail and includes 10 questions. Perfect for delivery in the classroom, self-study, or homework.

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Annotated o. henry gift of the magi with in slide questions and writing prompt at end Annotated o. henry gift of the magi with in slide questions and writing prompt at end Presentation Transcript

  • An Annotated Version Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Download the slide show from slideshare.com and run it in MS Powerpoint. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Download the slide show from slideshare.com and run it in MS Powerpoint. Then just keep pressing <Enter> to go through the presentation. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Download the slide show from slideshare.com and run it in MS Powerpoint. Then just keep pressing <Enter> to go through the presentation. You can go at your own pace and stop and restart anytime you want to. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Download the slide show from slideshare.com and run it in MS Powerpoint. Then just keep pressing <Enter> to go through the presentation. You can go at your own pace and stop and restart anytime you want to. The following slides give more details. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • The content part of the presentation will look like this: by O. Henry Annotated One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. This technique is called in media res, which is Latin for in the middle of things. Annotated The Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • The text from the story will appear here, in this papercolored block, in black text. by O. Henry Annotated One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. This technique is called in media res, which is Latin for in the middle of things. Annotated The Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • The text from the story will appear here, in this papercolored block, in black text. The notes for the displayed text will appear here, in the green-colored block, in white text. by O. Henry Annotated One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. This technique is called in media res, which is Latin for in the middle of things. Annotated The Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Sometimes, there is more than one “page” of notes for a particular “page” of text. by O. Henry Annotated There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. This technique is called in media res, which is Latin for in the middle of things. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Notes Annotated The Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Sometimes, there is more than one “page” of notes for a particular “page” of text. When that happens, you’ll see this to let you know that there are more notes to read. by O. Henry Annotated There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. This technique is called in media res, which is Latin for in the middle of things. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Notes Annotated The Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • When the notes are all done, this will appear to tell you that you are ready to go to the next page of text. by O. Henry Annotated One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. This technique is called in media res, which is Latin for in the middle of things. Annotated The Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • When the notes are all done, this will appear to tell you that you are ready to go to the next page of text. As always, just press <Enter> to keep going. by O. Henry Annotated One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. This technique is called in media res, which is Latin for in the middle of things. Annotated The Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Periodically, there are questions to answer in the notes section. by O. Henry Annotated One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. Question 1: Why do you think Della is in need of money? Annotated The Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Periodically, there are questions to answer in the notes section. The questions are easy to recognize because they are in reverse text. by O. Henry Annotated One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. Question 1: Why do you think Della is in need of money? Annotated The Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • by O. Henry Annotated Answer on a separate sheet of paper for turn-in. One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. Question 1: Why do you think Della is in need of money? Annotated The Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • And now, let’s begin our look at An Annotated Version Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. There’s no introduction; the story just starts right in the middle of things. This technique is called in medias res, which is Latin for in the middle of things. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • One dollar and eighty-seven cents. That was all. And sixty cents of it was in pennies. We’re told that someone has only $1.87. That’s not very much money. And a lot of it is in pennies, as if someone worked hard to scrape it together, a penny at a time. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Pennies saved one and two at a time by bulldozing the grocer and the vegetable man and the butcher until one's cheeks burned with the silent imputation of parsimony that such close dealing implied. This part tells us that the person who saved the $1.87 did so by arguing with merchants about prices and getting them to come down a penny or two at a time. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • Pennies saved one and two at a time by bulldozing the grocer and the vegetable man and the butcher until one's cheeks burned with the silent imputation of parsimony that such close dealing implied. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. That means that the merchants probably thought the shopper was a cheapskate! Being thought of as cheap is what silent imputation of parsimony means. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Three times Della counted it. One dollar and eightyseven cents. And the next day would be Christmas. The author now tells us the name of the person who is trying to get some money together: Della. And we find out here that the story takes place on the day before Christmas. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • There was clearly nothing to do but flop down on the shabby little couch and howl. So Della did it. Which instigates the moral reflection that life is made up of sobs, sniffles, and smiles, with sniffles predominating. Della doesn’t have enough money, and she’s upset about it. Question 1: Why do you think she might need money? Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • There was clearly nothing to do but flop down on the shabby little couch and howl. So Della did it. Which instigates the moral reflection that life is made up of sobs, sniffles, and smiles, with sniffles predominating. The author says that life is made up of sobs, sniffles, and smiles, with sniffles predominating. This is his way of saying that life is happy sometimes, sad sometimes, but mostly in between. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • There was clearly nothing to do but flop down on the shabby little couch and howl. So Della did it. Which instigates the moral reflection that life is made up of sobs, sniffles, and smiles, with sniffles predominating. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Notice that sobs, sniffles, and smiles all begin with the same sound. That’s not an accident. Repeating the same sound like that is called alliteration. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • While the mistress of the home is gradually subsiding from the first stage to the second, take a look at the home. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. The narrator now moves the focus from Della, who is on the couch crying, to the place where she is living. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • A furnished flat at $8 per week. It did not exactly beggar description, but it certainly had that word on the lookout for the mendicancy squad. A furnished flat is an apartment that has furniture already in it, which is rented. The rent on the apartment is $8 a week, which means it’s probably not very nice or new. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • A furnished flat at $8 per week. It did not exactly beggar description, but it certainly had that word on the lookout for the mendicancy squad. To beggar description means something that is so nice that it’s hard to describe in words. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • A furnished flat at $8 per week. It did not exactly beggar description, but it certainly had that word on the lookout for the mendicancy squad. When the narrator says that the apartment did not exactly beggar description, he means that it is old, shabby, and run-down. It is not new and nice. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • A furnished flat at $8 per week. It did not exactly beggar description, but it certainly had that word on the lookout for the mendicancy squad. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. “Mendicancy” means being poor and having to beg for money or food. The part it certainly had that word on the lookout for the mendicancy squad means that it’s a place where poor people might live. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • In the vestibule below was a letter-box into which no letter would go, and an electric button from which no mortal finger could coax a ring. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. A vestibule is an entryway that leads to several apartments. The letter-box is the mailbox. It’s broken, and so is the doorbell. That shows us that the apartments are shabby and rundown. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Also appertaining thereunto was a card bearing the name "Mr. James Dillingham Young." Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. On the mailbox for one of the apartments is a card to identify who lives there: Mr. James Dillingham Young. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • The "Dillingham" had been flung to the breeze during a former period of prosperity when its possessor was being paid $30 per week. Almost everyone has a middle name, but using it on the mailbox that way would have been something that rich people would do. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • The "Dillingham" had been flung to the breeze during a former period of prosperity when its possessor was being paid $30 per week. “Flung to the breeze” here means using the middle name in public. We’re told that the person used his middle name that way when he was being paid $30 a week. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • The "Dillingham" had been flung to the breeze during a former period of prosperity when its possessor was being paid $30 per week. That was a lot of money then, and so the person might have thought he would soon be rich, making that kind of money. But we’re told he’s not making that much anymore. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Now, when the income was shrunk to $20, though, they were thinking seriously of contracting to a modest and unassuming D. Now he’s only making $20 a week, so maybe the “Dillingham” part should be changed to “D.” Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • Now, when the income was shrunk to $20, though, they were thinking seriously of contracting to a modest and unassuming D. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. What the narrator is doing here is telling the reader that the person isn’t doing well financially right now. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • But whenever Mr. James Dillingham Young came home and reached his flat above he was called "Jim" and greatly hugged by Mrs. James Dillingham Young, already introduced to you as Della. The narrator tells us here that even though Mr. Young isn’t making as much money as he used too, his wife isn’t angry about it. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue And we find out that Della and Jim are the husband and wife in the story.
  • Which is all very good. Della finished her cry and attended to her cheeks with the powder rag. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Now we turn the focus back to Della, who is done crying. A powder rag is a cloth that a woman uses to put on and take off her makeup. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • She stood by the window and looked out dully at a gray cat walking a gray fence in a gray backyard. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della is worried about not having much money, and so everything looks gray to her as she wonders what to do. Question 2: Describe a situation when you were worried about something. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Tomorrow would be Christmas Day, and she had only $1.87 with which to buy Jim a present. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Now the author comes right out and tells us what the problem is—not enough money to buy a nice present for her husband for Christmas. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • She had been saving every penny she could for months, with this result. Twenty dollars a week doesn't go far. Expenses had been greater than she had calculated. They always are. The narrator gives us more information about how hard it has been for Della to scrape together money. The twenty dollars a week is her husband’s salary, as we’ve already been told. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • She had been saving every penny she could for months, with this result. Twenty dollars a week doesn't go far. Expenses had been greater than she had calculated. They always are. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Isn’t it true that expenses are always more than you think they will be? Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Only $1.87 to buy a present for Jim. Her Jim. Many a happy hour she had spent planning for something nice for him. The narrator gives us the impression that it has made Della happy to think about giving Jim something nice for Christmas. But what can you get that’s nice for just $1.87? Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Something fine and rare and sterling--something just a little bit near to being worthy of the honor of being owned by Jim. Sterling in this sense means genuine, as in the phrase sterling silver. That means real silver, not plated or painted, but real silver all the way through. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • There was a pier-glass between the windows of the room. Perhaps you have seen a pier-glass in an $8 flat. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Pier-glass is a kind of cheap mirror, made in long, narrow strips. It would have been used in cheap apartments instead of expensive plateglass mirror. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • A very thin and very agile person may, by observing his reflection in a rapid sequence of longitudinal strips, obtain a fairly accurate conception of his looks. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. By placing the strips of mirror together, you can make kind of an uneven mirror. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Della, being slender, had mastered the art. The narrator tells us here that Della can see herself pretty well in the cheap pier-glass mirror. That’s important for what is to come in the story. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Suddenly she whirled from the window and stood before the glass. her eyes were shining brilliantly, but her face had lost its color within twenty seconds. Rapidly she pulled down her hair and let it fall to its full length. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della sudden brightens up—maybe she has an idea? Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Now, there were two possessions of the James Dillingham Youngs in which they both took a mighty pride. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. The narrator will now spend some time describing two things that Della and Jim have that are important to them. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • One was Jim's gold watch that had been his father's and his grandfather's. Jim has a nice watch, that belonged to his family and that is now his. The watch would have been a big deal to him. It would be passed from father to son in the family. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • The other was Della's hair. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. And Della has long, beautiful hair. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Had the queen of Sheba lived in the flat across the airshaft, Della would have let her hair hang out the window some day to dry just to depreciate Her Majesty's jewels and gifts. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. The queen of Sheba was a legendary beauty from the Bible. The author is saying here that Della’s hair is so nice that it would have made the queen’s jewels and gifts look shabby. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Had King Solomon been the janitor, with all his treasures piled up in the basement, Jim would have pulled out his watch every time he passed, just to see him pluck at his beard from envy. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. King Solomon was a famous wise man from the Bible. The narrator is saying here that Jim watch is so nice that it would have made the king jealous. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • So now Della's beautiful hair fell about her rippling and shining like a cascade of brown waters. It reached below her knee and made itself almost a garment for her. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della’s hair, besides just being beautiful, is really long—it stretches all the way past her knees. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • And then she did it up again nervously and quickly. Once she faltered for a minute and stood still while a tear or two splashed on the worn red carpet. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della puts her hair back up, and cries just a little bit while she does so. Question 3: Why do you think Della is crying here? Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • On went her old brown jacket; on went her old brown hat. With a whirl of skirts and with the brilliant sparkle still in her eyes, she fluttered out the door and down the stairs to the street. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della gets dressed quickly and hurries out of the apartment. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Where she stopped the sign read: "Mne. Sofronie. Hair Goods of All Kinds." One flight up Della ran, and collected herself, panting. Mne. is an abbreviation for Madame. It is a word that comes from French that is used with the person’s last name to address a married woman, like we might use the term Mrs. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • Where she stopped the sign read: "Mne. Sofronie. Hair Goods of All Kinds." One flight up Della ran, and collected herself, panting. Mne. Sonfronie. Hair Goods of All Kinds. is a shop that buys and sells hair. This was common in the days before there was a manmade substitute for human hair to make wigs for people. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • Where she stopped the sign read: "Mne. Sofronie. Hair Goods of All Kinds." One flight up Della ran, and collected herself, panting. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Sofronie is a French name. Many times, sellers of hair and clothes would pretend they were French, because the French were the leaders in ladies fashions. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Madame, large, too white, chilly, hardly looked the "Sofronie." Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. The narrator tells us here that the woman who is calling herself Madame Sofronie doesn’t look much like we would expect a French woman to look. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • "Will you buy my hair?" asked Della. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Now we understand Della’s plan—she’s going to sell her hair to get money to buy Jim a gift. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • "I buy hair," said Madame. "Take yer hat off and let's have a sight at the looks of it." Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. The narrator shows us here that “Madame Sofronie” doesn’t speak the way a French woman would. She’s probably not French at all—but no one really expects her to be anyway. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Down rippled the brown cascade. "Twenty dollars," said Madame, lifting the mass with a practised hand. The word practised looks funny to us, as if it might be misspelled, but it isn’t. That way of spelling it was acceptable when this story was written. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • "Give it to me quick," said Della. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della asks for the money quickly, before she has a chance to change her mind. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Oh, and the next two hours tripped by on rosy wings. Forget the hashed metaphor. She was ransacking the stores for Jim's present. The narrator means that the time went by quickly, as if it were flying by. But he doesn’t say flew by on rosy wings, instead, he says tripped by on rosy wings. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • Oh, and the next two hours tripped by on rosy wings. Forget the hashed metaphor. He uses the word tripped instead of the more natural word, flew. That’s why he calls it a hashed metaphor. Hashed in this sense means a metaphor that’s not a very good one. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • She was ransacking the stores for Jim's present. She found it at last. It surely had been made for Jim and no one else. There was no other like it in any of the stores, and she had turned all of them inside out. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della has a lot of fun shopping—especially now that she has some money to spend —and finds a nice gift for Jim. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • It was a platinum fob chain simple and chaste in design, properly proclaiming its value by substance alone and not by meretricious ornamentation--as all good things should do. A fob chain is a chain that’s meant to attach to a pocket watch. The other end of the chain attaches to the man’s belt. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • It was a platinum fob chain simple and chaste in design, properly proclaiming its value by substance alone and not by meretricious ornamentation--as all good things should do. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. The point of the chain is so that if the watch slips out of the person’s hand, it won’t drop to the ground and probably break. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • It was a platinum fob chain simple and chaste in design, properly proclaiming its value by substance alone and not by meretricious ornamentation--as all good things should do. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Meretricious here means something that’s flashy. What the narrator is saying is that the chain was plain, but still very expensivelooking. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • It was even worthy of The Watch. As soon as she saw it she knew that it must be Jim's. It was like him. Quietness and value--the description applied to both. The narrator calls it not just the watch but the Watch. Capitalizing the word watch tells us that it’s a very special watch—maybe the only one of its kind. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • It was even worthy of The Watch. As soon as she saw it she knew that it must be Jim's. It was like him. Quietness and value--the description applied to both. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della thinks that the fob chain is perfect for Jim because, like her husband, it is quiet (meaning its just a plain chain) and it has value. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Twenty-one dollars they took from her for it, and she hurried home with the 87 cents. The fob chain cost $21. Della had $1.87 saved, and earned $20 from the sale of her hair, so now she has only 87 cents left. But that’s okay, because she got a nice gift for Jim. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • With that chain on his watch Jim might be properly anxious about the time in any company. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della thinks that Jim might be eager to pull out his watch to “check the time” a lot, now that he will have a nice chain to show off. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Grand as the watch was, he sometimes looked at it on the sly on account of the old leather strap that he used in place of a chain. The narrator tells us that since Jim has only a leather strap to tie up his watch, he sometimes is shy or embarrassed about pulling it out to check the time. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • When Della reached home her intoxication gave way a little to prudence and reason. The word intoxication usually implies that someone has been drinking alcohol, but the author doesn’t mean that at all when he uses that word here. The narrator means that Della was very happy. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • When Della reached home her intoxication gave way a little to prudence and reason. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. But now that she’s back home, she must face the reality of having lost her beautiful long hair. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • She got out her curling irons and lighted the gas and went to work repairing the ravages made by generosity added to love. Which is always a tremendous task, dear friends--a mammoth task. In the days before electricity, curling irons for hair were heated up by gas burners, used, then placed back on the burner to heat up again. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • She got out her curling irons and lighted the gas and went to work repairing the ravages made by generosity added to love. Which is always a tremendous task, dear friends--a mammoth task. Della is trying to do what can be done with the short hair she has left. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • She got out her curling irons and lighted the gas and went to work repairing the ravages made by generosity added to love. Which is always a tremendous task, dear friends--a mammoth task. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. The author uses the words ravages made by generosity added to love to describe what’s left of Della’s hair after she’s cut it off to sell it. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • She got out her curling irons and lighted the gas and went to work repairing the ravages made by generosity added to love. Which is always a tremendous task, dear friends--a mammoth task. What the author means is that when we love someone and want to be generous to them—as Della loves Jim—we often do things that are a sacrifice to ourselves. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • She got out her curling irons and lighted the gas and went to work repairing the ravages made by generosity added to love. Which is always a tremendous task, dear friends--a mammoth task. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. To repair these “ravages,” the author says, is very hard to do—and that’s very often true. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Within forty minutes her head was covered with tiny, close-lying curls that made her look wonderfully like a truant schoolboy. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della uses the curling iron to curl what hair she has left. This sort of curls made in short hair is the hairstyle that schoolboys of the period might have. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • She looked at her reflection in the mirror long, carefully, and critically. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Question 4: Why do you think Della is now so concerned with the way she looks? Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • "If Jim doesn't kill me," she said to herself, "before he takes a second look at me, he'll say I look like a Coney Island chorus girl. Now Della’s starting to get worried about what effect the loss of her hair will have on Jim. Coney Island was an amusement park in New York City. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • "If Jim doesn't kill me," she said to herself, "before he takes a second look at me, he'll say I look like a Coney Island chorus girl. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Young women who worked as singers in a chorus at Coney Island might have worn short curly hairstyles. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • At 7 o'clock the coffee was made and the frying-pan was on the back of the stove hot and ready to cook the chops. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della has gotten things ready for Jim to come home. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Jim was never late. Della doubled the fob chain in her hand and sat on the corner of the table near the door that he always entered. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della continues to worry about what Jim is going to think about her missing hair. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Then she heard his step on the stair away down on the first flight, and she turned white for just a moment. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. And here comes Jim. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • The door opened and Jim stepped in and closed it. He looked thin and very serious. Poor fellow, he was only twenty-two--and to be burdened with a family! He needed a new overcoat and he was without gloves. The narrator says that Jim was burdened with a family. That doesn’t mean that he and Della have children. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • The door opened and Jim stepped in and closed it. He looked thin and very serious. Poor fellow, he was only twenty-two--and to be burdened with a family! He needed a new overcoat and he was without gloves. It just means that he does have a wife, and that his wife doesn’t have a job. In those days, many women did not work outside the home. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • The door opened and Jim stepped in and closed it. He looked thin and very serious. Poor fellow, he was only twenty-two--and to be burdened with a family! He needed a new overcoat and he was without gloves. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Since Della doesn’t have any income, Jim has to be the breadwinner for both of them. Again, the narrator tells us that Jim’s clothing is old and worn, suggesting that the family doesn’t have much money. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Jim stopped inside the door, as immovable as a setter at the scent of quail. The phrase setter at the scent of quail refers to a breed of dog that hunters went hunting with. The dog was trained to stop and point when he noticed a bird in the grass ahead. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • Jim stopped inside the door, as immovable as a setter at the scent of quail. The dog would continue to stand completely still, even when the hunter would fire his gun over the dog’s head at the bird. A quail is a kind of bird that the hunter might be after. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • His eyes were fixed upon Della, and there was an expression in them that she could not read, and it terrified her. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della sees that her husband notices, but she’s not sure what his expression means. Question 5: Do you think that Jim is going to be angry about her missing hair? Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • It was not anger, nor surprise, nor disapproval, nor horror, nor any of the sentiments that she had been prepared for. Della knows what her husband’s expression is when he’s angry, surprised, when he disapproves of something, or when he is horrified. She can tell that this expression is none of those things. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • He simply stared at her fixedly with that peculiar expression on his face. Jim has a peculiar expression on his face because he knows something that Della does not know. We’re about to find out what it is. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Della wriggled off the table and went for him. Della is nervous about what Jim’s expression means, so she finally went for him and is going to explain. Went for him means she runs right up to him. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • "Jim, darling," she cried, "don't look at me that way. I had my hair cut off and sold because I couldn't have lived through Christmas without giving you a present. Della wants to quickly explain about why she is missing her hair. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • It'll grow out again--you won't mind, will you? I just had to do it. My hair grows awfully fast. Say `Merry Christmas!' Jim, and let's be happy. You don't know what a nice-- what a beautiful, nice gift I've got for you." Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. The reader can imagine her saying all this hurriedly, trying to smooth over the problem by explaining that she got Jim a nice gift. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • "You've cut off your hair?" asked Jim, laboriously, as if he had not arrived at that patent fact yet even after the hardest mental labor. Jim is in shock about the hair, but not for the reason that Della thinks! Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue We’re about to find out why.
  • "Cut it off and sold it," said Della. "Don't you like me just as well, anyhow? I'm me without my hair, ain't I?" Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Yes, of course, she’s the same person with or without her hair. But having beautiful long hair and then suddenly not having it is a bit of a shock! Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Jim looked about the room curiously. "You say your hair is gone?" he said, with an air almost of idiocy. Jim still can’t quite believe what he’s seeing, but not for the reason that Della thinks! We’re about to find out why. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • "You needn't look for it," said Della. "It's sold, I tell you--sold and gone, too. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della picks up on Jim’s looking around the room, and she tries to make a joke. You needn’t look for it is her little joke. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • It's Christmas Eve, boy. Be good to me, for it went for you. Again, Della is trying to soothe what she imagines might be Jim’s anger at her missing hair. But he’s not angry. It’s something else. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Maybe the hairs of my head were numbered," she went on with sudden serious sweetness, "but nobody could ever count my love for you. Della’s comment about the hairs on her head being numbered refers to the Bible. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • Maybe the hairs of my head were numbered," she went on with sudden serious sweetness, "but nobody could ever count my love for you. The Bible says that our days are numbered, just as are the hairs on our head. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • Maybe the hairs of my head were numbered," she went on with sudden serious sweetness, "but nobody could ever count my love for you. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. What that means is that none of us are going to live forever. Della here is saying, yes, the hairs of her head were numbered, but her love for Jim is not. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Shall I put the chops on, Jim?" This is Della’s way of asking if he would like her to start dinner. Maybe Della thinks that doing something ordinary and routine will bring Jim back to reality a little bit. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Out of his trance Jim seemed quickly to wake. He enfolded his Della. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Finally, Jim seems to snap out of it. Enfolded his Della means that Jim gave her a great big hug. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • For ten seconds let us regard with discreet scrutiny some inconsequential object in the other direction. Here, the narrator asks the reader to turn away and look somewhere else for a few seconds. It was impolite to stare at a husband and wife while they were hugging—or maybe even kissing a little too. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Eight dollars a week or a million a year--what is the difference? A mathematician or a wit would give you the wrong answer. Remember that the apartment where they live cost $8 a week? Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • Eight dollars a week or a million a year--what is the difference? A mathematician or a wit would give you the wrong answer. The author here says that although they live in a shabby little apartment, they are as happy as if they lived in a million dollar mansion. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • Eight dollars a week or a million a year--what is the difference? A mathematician or a wit would give you the wrong answer. That is to say that it makes them no difference. But a mathematician would certainly say there’s a difference between a million a year and $8 a week! Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • Eight dollars a week or a million a year--what is the difference? A mathematician or a wit would give you the wrong answer. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. A wit is a person who is smart and can make jokes. That kind of person might make a joke about the difference between a million a year and $8 a week. But it makes no difference to Jim and Della, you see. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • The Magi brought valuable gifts, but that was not among them. This dark assertion will be illuminated later on. The Magi were the three wise men that brought gifts to the infant Jesus at Bethlehem. The Magi brought gifts that were useful—that’s important to know. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • The Magi brought valuable gifts, but that was not among them. This dark assertion will be illuminated later on. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. The author is giving us a hint of what is to come later in the story. The hint is that there’s something about Della’s gift that’s even better than the gifts that the Magi brought the baby Jesus. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Jim drew a package from his overcoat pocket and threw it upon the table. Well, it looks like Jim has a gift of his own. It’s a package small enough to fit in his pocket—what could it be? And how could he have money to buy a gift? Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • "Don't make any mistake, Dell," he said, "about me. I don't think there's anything in the way of a haircut or a shave or a shampoo that could make me like my girl any less. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Jim reassures Della that her hair being there or being gone is not something that would make him angry. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • But if you'll unwrap that package you may see why you had me going a while at first." But there is something that made him have that strange expression— something that the package will explain. What could it be? Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • White fingers and nimble tore at the string and paper. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della opens the package in a rush. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • And then an ecstatic scream of joy; and then, alas! a quick feminine change to hysterical tears and wails, necessitating the immediate employment of all the comforting powers of the lord of the flat. She squeals with joy when she sees what it is—and then suddenly starts crying all over again! Crying so hard that Jim—the lord of the flat—has to try to comfort her. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved.
  • And then an ecstatic scream of joy; and then, alas! a quick feminine change to hysterical tears and wails, necessitating the immediate employment of all the comforting powers of the lord of the flat. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. And it’s not happy crying, either—Della is really sad all of a sudden. What could the small package possibly be? Question 6: What do you think the package might be? Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • For there lay The Combs-the set of combs, side and back, that Della had worshipped long in a Broadway window. Beautiful combs, pure tortoise shell, with jewelled rims--just the shade to wear in the beautiful vanished hair. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. The package turns out to be a set of combs—we would call them barrettes— that women use to hold their hair in place. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes
  • For there lay The Combs-the set of combs, side and back, that Della had worshipped long in a Broadway window. Beautiful combs, pure tortoise shell, with jewelled rims--just the shade to wear in the beautiful vanished hair. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. These particular combs are some that Della has wanted badly for a long time. They’re just the right color and everything. Press <Enter> to Continue Notes
  • For there lay The Combs-the set of combs, side and back, that Della had worshipped long in a Broadway window. Beautiful combs, pure tortoise shell, with jewelled rims--just the shade to wear in the beautiful vanished hair. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Do you see why she was very happy at first and then all of a sudden very upset? She forgot for a minute that her hair is gone! Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • They were expensive combs, she knew, and her heart had simply craved and yearned over them without the least hope of possession. They were expensive combs, we’re told. But we already know that Jim and Della don’t have much money. Question 7: How do you think Jim might have gotten the money to buy them? Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • And now, they were hers, but the tresses that should have adorned the coveted adornments were gone. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. She has the combs, but no hair to wear them in. Now we see why Jim had that strange expression on his face when he saw Della and saw that her hair was gone. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • But she hugged them to her bosom, and at length she was able to look up with dim eyes and a smile and say: "My hair grows so fast, Jim!" Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Yes, eventually, Della’s hair will grow long again, and she’ll be able to wear the combs in it. It will probably be a long time, though. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • And them Della leaped up like a little singed cat and cried, "Oh, oh!" All of a sudden, Della remembers the nice gift she has for Jim! She wants him to have it right away because Jim was so nice to buy her the combs she wanted. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Jim had not yet seen his beautiful present. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della rushes to get the fob chain she bought with the money she got from selling her hair. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • She held it out to him eagerly upon her open palm. The dull precious metal seemed to flash with a reflection of her bright and ardent spirit. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Ardent here means eager, and Della is eager to please her Jim with the nice gift. Question 8: What do you think Jim’s reaction to the nice gift will be? Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • "Isn't it a dandy, Jim? I hunted all over town to find it. You'll have to look at the time a hundred times a day now. Give me your watch. I want to see how it looks on it." Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Della wants to see what the chain looks like with the watch attached to it, and she want to see it right away! Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Instead of obeying, Jim tumbled down on the couch and put his hands under the back of his head and smiled. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. What is Jim smiling about? And why doesn’t he give her the watch? We’re about to find out. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • "Dell," said he, "let's put our Christmas presents away and keep 'em a while. They're too nice to use just at present. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Jim says a strange thing here. But he probably knows that Della won’t let him get away with that—she’s going to insist on seeing what the watch looks like with the new chain. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • I sold the watch to get the money to buy your combs. And now we find out why Jim smiled when he saw that his gift was a watch fob chain. His gift is as useless to him now as Della’s gift is to her. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • And now suppose you put the chops on." Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Jim suggests that Della start dinner, and that’s the last that we hear in the story about Jim and Della. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • The magi, as you know, were wise men-wonderfully wise men--who brought gifts to the Babe in the manger. They invented the art of giving Christmas presents. The narrator wants us to know that the Magi were the first Christmas gift givers, and that they were wise enough to choose good gifts. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Being wise, their gifts were no doubt wise ones, possibly bearing the privilege of exchange in case of duplication. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Maybe the gifts they gave were gifts that could be returned, if need be. Being able to be returned might be one quality of a good gift. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • And here I have lamely related to you the uneventful chronicle of two foolish children in a flat who most unwisely sacrificed for each other the greatest treasures of their house. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. The narrator calls Jim and Della two foolish children, and says that they most unwisely sacrificed their greatest treasures. Question 9: Do you think Jim and Della’s gifts were foolish? Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • But in a last word to the wise of these days let it be said that of all who give gifts these two were the wisest. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. But it’s hard to explain what makes a good gift, and the narrator wants to say that Jim and Della’s gifts to each other were the best gifts— even better than the Magi’s gifts to baby Jesus. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • To all who give and receive gifts, such as they are wisest. Everywhere they are wisest. They are the magi. The narrator again states that of all people who have given and do give gifts, Jim and Della’s gifts were the wisest. The narrator ends the story by saying they—Jim and Della— are the Magi. Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • Now you know the story “The Gift of the Magi.” The last question is an essay-type of question. Answer it by writing at least 100 words. Question 10: At the end of the story, the narrator says that Jim and Della are the Magi. This is a metaphor. They’re not really the Magi, but the narrator is saying they are like the Magi. Remembering that the Magi were the wise men who brought gifts to the infant Jesus, how are Jim and Della like the Magi? Annotated Gift of the Magi © 2007. All Rights Reserved. Press <Enter> Now to Continue
  • An Annotated Version The End