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Della and Jim were not very prosperous, so Della had to have great parsimony when saving money for a Christmas present for her husband who she loved very much. She did not have enough money though, so she cried.
There were only two things that the Dillingham Youngs had that were coveted: Jim's gold watch and Della's long cascade of hair.
To Della, her love for Jim was predominating compared to her hair so she cut and sold it in order to buy Jim's Christmas present, a chain for his gold watch.
Della found the chain and waited nervously for Jim to return home so she could ardently present the chain to him.
"I hope my husband still thinks I'm pretty."
I cut my hair and sold it to buy you a chain for your watch.
When Jim comes home and sees that Della has cut her hair to buy the chain he is shocked. Della finds out that Jim had bought combs for her hair that she had wanted for a long time.
Wait you cut your hair?
Jim tells Della that he sold his watch to buy the combs for Della's hair. Even though both of their gifts are rendered useless they are the best because they gave away something they treasured to make the other happy.
Well, I sold my watch to buy those combs you wanted for your hair.
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