John Neal (August 25, 1793 – June 20, 1876), was an author and art/literary critic. He was a man of diverse talents and objectives, many of which were pioneering in his day. For example, he is credited as being the first American author to employ colloquialism in his writing, breaking with more formal traditions in literature. However, he was also undisciplined and often rambling, so despite its period significance, his literary work has drifted into obscurity. He was also an early women's rights advocate, prohibitionist, temperance advocate, opponent of dueling, accomplished lawyer, boxer, and architect.