[[quoteright:303:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/DanielDeronda_2941.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:303:No, seriously.]]

''Daniel Deronda'' (1876), Creator/GeorgeEliot's final novel, explores highly unusual territory for Victorian fiction: the title character, raised as a Christian, discovers and embraces his Jewish heritage. The novel has two main plots. In one, Daniel Deronda transforms from a serious but rootless young man, convinced that he is the illegitimate son of his guardian, Sir Hugo Mallinger, into a man of purpose, committed to the welfare of the Jewish people. He is inspired along the way by Mirah Lapidoth, an innocent Jewish singer whom he rescues from an attempted suicide, and by Mordecai, a Jewish mystic. In the other plot, the lovely but chilly (and self-involved) Gwendolen Harleth rescues her family from ruin by marrying the sadistic Mr. Grandcourt--even though she knows perfectly well that Grandcourt has fathered two children with his mistress, Lydia Glasher. As the novel progresses and Gwendolen sinks further and further into despair, she desperately turns to Daniel for moral support.

----
!!Tropes used:

* AccidentalMurder: [[spoiler: Grandcourt's drowning.]]
* AmbitionIsEvil: Alcharisi, who wants to pursue her successful theatrical career, gives up her son to do it; when she thinks her voice has been wrecked, she makes an aristocratic marriage. The result: misery and [[spoiler: an agonizing death from cancer.]] Mirah Lapidoth, however, enjoys singing, but she loathes public performance. The result: [[spoiler: she is reunited with her brother, freed from her horrible father, and married to Daniel.]]
* UsefulNotes/TheAmericanCivilWar: Unlike Eliot's other novels, ''Daniel Deronda'' is set just a decade before its publication. The characters and the narrator occasionally reference what's going on in the United States, both as a moral touchstone and as a reminder that Gwendolen's worldview is extremely narrow.
* AssholeVictim: [[spoiler: Grandcourt.]]
* BaitTheDog: Grandcourt, both literally and figuratively. He rapidly veers into KickTheDog, however.
* BaldOfEvil: Grandcourt has lost most of his hair.
* BettyAndVeronica: Gwendolen and Mirah.
** A case of BettyAndVeronicaSwitch : Gwendolene is a well-liked Christian with blond hair and she seems very grounded, and Mirah is a jewish outcast with a melancholy disposition, [[spoiler: but Mirah is simply traumatized and very sweet, while Gwendolene, despite her good size, is a bit of an hysterical GoldDigger and may and may not be a sympathetic murderer. ]]
* BewareTheQuietOnes: Grandcourt, whose voice becomes softer and softer as he grows more and more dangerous.
* BittersweetEnding: It's not actually clear what's going to happen to Daniel and [[spoiler: Mirah]], let alone whether any of Daniel's and Mordecai's plans are going to come to fruition. Gwendolen, meanwhile, ends the novel [[spoiler: widowed]], abandoned by Daniel, and suffering from recurring fits of hysteria.
* BreakTheHaughty: Gwendolen, who has already treated one suitor badly, marries Grandcourt to avoid having to work for a living--even though she knows what this will mean for Grandcourt's mistress, Lydia. This turns out to be a bad, ''bad'' idea.
* CharacterTics: Grandcourt. Speaks. Slowly.
* CharacterTitle
* CreepyPainting: The hidden painting of the corpse at Offendene. Does double duty as {{Foreshadowing}}.
* DesperatelyLookingForAPurposeInLife: Deronda, who has a hard time figuring out what it is he's called to do.
* DistractedByTheLuxury: Soon subverted. Although Gwendolen initially jumps at Grandcourt's proposal on account of the lovely things he can buy her, she suffers a mental breakdown when [[spoiler: Lydia Glasher sends her the diamonds that Grandcourt had once given to her.]]
* DrivenToSuicide: Mirah Lapidoth; averted, however, when Daniel manages to rescue her.
* EvilHasABadSenseOfHumor: ''Franchise/StarTrek'' has Vulcans who laugh more than Grandcourt.
* FirstLove: Gwendolen to Rex Gascoigne.
* GoldDigger: Played with. Gwendolen treats Grandcourt as a MealTicket in order to avoid becoming a governess, but her mediocre talents and education don't leave her many other avenues with which to save her family from destitution.
* HardWorkHardlyWorks: Sternly subverted by Klesmer, the musician who itemizes all of Gwendolen's faults as a potential actress. Similarly, even though Mirah has TheGift, she nevertheless has spent her life in training for performance.
* HatesBeingTouched: Gwendolen's aversion to anything sexual.
* HeirClubForMen: Sir Hugo Mallinger only has daughters, so his estates and title will descend to Grandcourt.
* HeroesLoveDogs: Massively averted. Grandcourt's supposed "love" for his dogs reveals the manipulative side of his nature.
* HorribleJudgeOfCharacter: Gwendolen thinks she can handle Grandcourt well enough. Oops.
* HowWeGotHere: After Gwendolen's mother recalls her to England in the novel's early chapters, the plot rewinds a year and recounts all the events leading up to her decision to go abroad in the first place.
* KarmicDeath: [[spoiler: Mr. Grandcourt]]
* KissingCousins: Daniel's real parents.
* LongBusTrip: Daniel and [[spoiler: Mirah]] exit the novel by going to [[spoiler: Palestine]], with no assurances that they will ever return to England.
* LukeIAmYourFather: In Daniel's case, mother and father.
* LongLostRelative: Mirah and [[spoiler: Mordecai.]]
* MeaningfulName: the Biblically-inspired Daniel and Mordecai.
** "Harleth" is suspiciously close to "harlot."
** And, of course, Grandcourt's sidekick, Lush.
** How did I forget Grandcourt himself?
** A musician named Klesmer (Klezmer is a Jewish style of music)
** Daniel's last name Deronda hints at his Jewish heritage. (''Deronda'' means "of Ronda", a city in Andalusia, Spain, where his Jewish ancestors were presumably expelled.)
* MissingMom: Daniel's absent mother; Mirah's and [[spoiler: Mordecai's]] dead mother.
* MistakenForCheating: Grandcourt suspects that Gwendolen is trying to have an affair with Daniel. Or something of the sort.
* MysteriousParent: Alcharisi.
* NoodleIncident: We are never told what happened to Mrs. Cohen's daughter.
* OneSteveLimit: Averted as a plot point.
* ParentalAbandonment: Alcharisi wanted Daniel to be kept entirely ignorant of his Jewish heritage.
* ParentalMarriageVeto: [[spoiler: Catherine Arrowpoint's parents]] try this when she announces that she is going to marry Klesmer. They don't get very far.
** By contrast, Mr. Gascoigne successfully vetoes Rex's desire to marry Gwendolen. Then again, Gwendolen has no interest in marrying Rex.
* PassedOverInheritance: Grandcourt's will has two options: if Gwendolen has a son, he and she will inherit everything, with a relatively small maintenance to Lydia Glasher and the four illegitimate children; if Gwendolen has no son, then Grandcourt's illegitimate son Henleigh takes everything, and Gwendolen receives the pittance. Unusually for this trope, Gwendolen knows of the arrangement ahead of time. [[spoiler: In the end, the inheritance goes to Henleigh, and Gwendolen debates whether or not she should even accept the house and maintenance.]]
* QuintessentialBritishGentleman: Grandcourt is a brutal parody of this.
* RuleOfSymbolism: Observe how Grandcourt treats his dogs. Now, see how he treats his wife...
* SecretOtherFamily: Grandcourt's mistress, Lydia Glasher, and their children. The whole problem is that Gwendolen ''knows they exist,'' and yet marries Grandcourt anyway.
* SesquipedalianSmith: Thomas Cranmer Lush, the last character who ought to be named after an archbishop.
* ShrinkingViolet: Mirah (who particularly loathes her stage career).
* StageMom: Or, in this case, Stage Dad--Mirah's father.
* SympatheticMurderer: [[spoiler: Gwendolen.]] Whether or not [[spoiler: she]] actually ''murders'' [[spoiler: Grandcourt]], as opposed to accidentally letting [[spoiler: him drown in a moment of shock]], is left deliberately ambiguous.
* TheAtoner: Alcharisi.
** By the end of the novel, arguably [[spoiler: Gwendolen]] as well.
* TheGambler: Gwendolen, in the novel's famous opening.
** Mirah's father Lapidoth is a more conventional example.
* TheTease: Gwendolen, especially with Rex Gascoigne. She also tries this on Grandcourt, with unfortunate results.
* TwoLinesNoWaiting: Gwendolen and Daniel have their own, clearly-defined plots, although they repeatedly cross paths.
* WriteWhoYouKnow: Eliot partly modeled Mordecai after her friend, Immanuel Deutsch.
----