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Although George Eliot's philosophy of sympathy is revered for its union of the ethical with the aesthetic, it also merges the ethical with the economic. Invested with economic importance and investigated with economic language, Eliotic sympathy ultimately figures as an economy. But while the Victorians were growing increasingly infatuated with the economy figure of psychic life, Eliot continued to probe the costs of that figure. Such consideration arguably animates Middlemarch's distinct narrative form of parabasis, and its heroine's vexing marriages.