This study examines how dyads enact gender in compliment exchange. With 1200 compliments, the author uses correlational methods to describe their frequency according to sex, age, social status, relationships and ethnicity and to shed light on the subjects'' complimenting patterns and give explanations for their compliment behavior. The analysis reveals speaker-sex tendencies and internal contradictions within local norms for gendered speech behavior. These results make monolithic statements about universal gender practice problematic. Thus it proposes a co- existential model for recognizing both generalizations and local self-identity in gender meaning. The study reveals some sociocultural norms in Nigerian speech behaviour and offers insights into what compliments are. It improves on the existing taxonomies for compliment responses by proposing the combined use of three distinct social actions - supportive, evaluative and attributive actions of compliments. Readers/researcher in language and gender, anthropological linguistics, sociology of language, ethnography of communication will find this book intriguing and illuminating.