The story begins with Della Dillingham Young worrying about money.
She has $1.87 to buy a present for her husband Jim.
And the next day is Christmas.
Because of this situation, Della starts crying.
For she and her husband are poor, and they live in a small, dirty apartment.
But they love each other very much.
When Della stops crying, she goes to a mirror and examines her hair.
Della's long, beautiful, brown hair is one of the two things of value that the couple possess.
The other is Jim's gold watch.
After looking at her hair, Della puts it back up and goes outside.
She walks to a hair goods shop.
She sells her hair for $20.00.
Now she has $21.87.
With her new money, Della is able to find the perfect gift for Jim.
It is an elegant watch chain for his gold watch.
She pays $21 for it.
She then returns home and tries to make her new short hair look more beautiful.
She is worried about what Jim will think of her appearance.
Jim comes home at 7pm and finds Della waiting by the door.
He stares at her astonished.
He is not able to understand what has happened.
Della is worried.
After a little while, Jim starts to talk.
He gives Della her present.
He explains that she will understand his reaction when she opens the gift.
Della opens it and cries in joy.
Then she starts to cry in sorrow.
Jim has given her a set of expensive combs for her long beautiful hair.
Jim tries to make Della stop crying.
When she stops, she gives Jim his present.
It is the chain for his gold watch.
Jim smiles and falls back on the couch.
He tells her that he sold his watch to buy Della's combs.
He recommends that they put away their presents and have dinner.
It is clear that Della and Jim are the wisest of gift givers.
They are the magi.