Literary devices used by O. Henry in his classic short story "The Gift that the Magi" incorporate allusions, alliteration, imagery, metaphors, similes, foreshadowing, hyperbole, and the different types of irony that occur throughout the story.

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O. Henry supplies a range of literary gadgets throughout his classic short story "The Gift that the Magi," first published in 1905, which has been adapted into countless films—as early on as 1909—and into plays and also television programs.

Allusions—references to literature, people, and legends exterior the story—in "The Gift...


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O. Henry uses a selection of literary gadgets throughout his classic short story "The Gift that the Magi," very first published in 1905, which has been adapted into numerous films—as at an early stage as 1909—and right into plays and also television programs.

Allusions—references to literature, people, and legends external the story—in "The Gift that the Magi" start with the title itself, which describes the three magi, the three wise guys or three majesties "who carried gifts come the Babe in the manger." The story additionally contains various other allusions to King Solomon and to the Queen the Sheba.

Had the Queen the Sheba resided in the flat across the airshaft, Della would have let she hair hang the end the window some day come dry simply to depreciate her Majesty"s jewels and also gifts. Had King Solomon to be the janitor, with all his prizes piled up in the basement, Jim would have pulled out his watch every time that passed, simply to see him pluck at his beard from envy.

This paragraph additionally includes the imagery, or visualization, that Della"s hair hanging out of the window, the Queen that Sheba envying Della"s hair native "the flat throughout the airshaft," and also King Solomon plucking his beard in ~ the vision of Jim"s watch.

The exaggerated reactions of the Queen of Sheba to Della"s hair and of King Solomon to Jim"s watch, i m sorry O. Henry provides for humorous effect, are likewise examples the hyperbole.

There"s an allusion come Della as "a Coney Island chorus girl"—a reference to the amusement park in Brooklyn, brand-new York, which is renowned for amusement rides, warm dogs, and also saltwater taffy—after she has actually her hair cut.

There"s also a simile, "like a Coney Island chorus girl," using "like" to compare Della come the short-haired woman singer-dancers that entertained there.

"Della"s beautiful hair fell around her, rippling and also shining choose a cascade that brown waters" and "Della leaped up choose a small singed cat" are also examples that similes utilizing "like." "Jim stopped inside the door, together immovable as a setter at the odor of quail" is a simile that uses "as" instead of "like" to make the comparison.

Other instances of imagery in the story incorporate the phrase "beautiful combs, pure tortoise shell, v jewelled rims," and also this image of Della:

On went her old brown jacket; on went her old brown hat. V a whirl the skirts and also with the brilliant sparkle quiet in she eyes, she fluttered the end the door and also down the stairs to the street.

O. Henry also includes what that calls "the hashed metaphor," the indirect compare of dissimilar things, as soon as he says, "and the following two hours tripped by on rose wings" if Della shops because that a gift for Jim. O. Henry likewise uses metaphor in his comparison of Della and also Jim come the magi.

The unit volume "sobs, sniffles, and smiles, v sniffles predominating" and also "sudden severe sweetness" are examples of alliteration, i beg your pardon is the repetition of the very same or similar sounds—such together the "s" in these examples—at the start of words that show up close together. This kind of alliteration is referred to as consonance, due to the fact that the sound that"s repeated is a consonant sound. (Assonance is the repetition of collection sounds.)

Foreshadowing—presenting hints or clues of future happenings in the story—occurs throughout the story and also includes O. Henry"s repeated focus on Della"s hair and Jim"s watch, Della"s acquisition of the clock fob, and Jim"s acquisition of the hair combs.

"Jim was never late" is an instance of foreshadowing, i beg your pardon raises the concern of why Jim was late, i m sorry is answered later in the story.

The recurring foreshadowing helps to highlight the irony in the story. Dramatic irony occurs once the reader knows something that one or much more characters in the story doesn"t know. The leader knows that Della marketed her hair, i m sorry Della has currently foreshadowed will be fairly a surprise for Jim once he comes ago home.

Situational irony occurs as soon as something unforeseen happens, i beg your pardon is the surprise for the reader of the presents that Della and Jim buy because that each other and also the surprise of Jim selling his clock to purchase the combs that he offers to Della.

Della"s early reaction come the combs is also situational irony.

And climate an ecstatic scream the joy; and then, alas! a rapid feminine readjust to hysterical tears and also wails.

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The finishing of the story is also ironic. Instead of being upset about getting presents the they can"t use and also regretting selling their hair and watch come buy gifts for each other, Jim and also Della merely accept the situation as the is and sit down to have actually dinner, expertise that their love because that each various other is more valuable than any type of material possession or gift.