You can continue to thoughtlessly pollute, Ruskin warns his readers, but in so doing you will destroy the earth and end your own existence. Six years earlier, in 1865, Ruskin coined the term “dis-ease” to denote a clear link between ill-being and environmental detachment. He yoked physical and mental health, elucidating “[h]ow literally that word Dis-Ease, the Negation and impossibility of Ease, expressed the entire moral state of our English Industry and its Amusements!” (“Of Kings’ Treasuries” 282). For Ruskin, nineteenth-century mills and factories, despite promising consumer satisfaction, made comfort impossible by endlessly producing frivolous, disposable goods, and thus waste. This needless consumption, a symptom of industry, produced an ignorance of true needs. Dis-ease, mental and bodily discomfort, resulted from alienation from the ecosystem, the networks of dependence between all species, and that estrangement blinded human beings to their actual role in the environment. While Ruskin focused on urban toxicity, the toxic ideological separation between humans and their environment impacted all spaces, a concern that several Victorian writers raised decades earlier than he did. This article traces the salutary cultural anxiety over improper sanitation and contaminants in two popular mid-nineteenth-century novels that demonstrate the effects of anthropogenic pollution in urban and rural environments, respectively. Published almost exactly one year apart, both Elizabeth Gaskell's Mary Barton (1848) and Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre (1847) invoke what I call eco-consciousness in their description of urban and rural filth, portrayed as both visible and invisible toxins. Gaskell uncovers urban pollution in plain sight, going beyond smell to expose the causes of toxicity, while Brontë challenges the belief in the country as a safe haven from pollution, going beyond beauty to expose rural toxicity. Characters suffer physical disease and mental dis-ease resulting from a poor understanding of ecological relationships. Reading Jane Eyre alongside Mary Barton accentuates Brontë’s use of eco-consciousness to expose the hidden dangers of rural pollution that resulted from the very types of urban toxicity that Gaskell identifies.