What are some of the themes in "The Gift of Magi"?

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Another theme in the short story "Gift of the Magi" is that of secrecy, particularly in giving. Part of Jim and Della's reasoning in keeping the gifts secret is of course the element of surprise. Both are looking forward to the excitement of the element of surprise when their loved...

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Another theme in the short story "Gift of the Magi" is that of secrecy, particularly in giving. Part of Jim and Della's reasoning in keeping the gifts secret is of course the element of surprise. Both are looking forward to the excitement of the element of surprise when their loved one finally opens the much-saved for present. The humorous irony of secrecy in marriage and relationships is borne out by the fact that the combs are now redundant, because Della has sacrificed her long hair, which makes Jim a little sad. This is a poignant moment, but at least everyone in the story ,and the readers, can be comforted by the fact that hair grows back - and both will have learned a little about keeping secrets in marriage!

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To me, the major theme of this story is that of love.  The story explores what love is through the actions of Jim and Delia.

In the story, Jim and Delia are very generous to one another.  They are each willing to give up their most treasured possessions in order to give the other a present.  This is a tremendously loving thing to do for another person.  The author is saying that even if a gift ends up not being useful, the thought behind it can show great love.

So the main theme is love and how a person may show love to another.

Enotes' summary also says that wealth and poverty is a theme.  It points out that the couple is poor in material goods but is rich because of their love.

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