John Galt (2 May 1779 - 11 April 1839) was a Scottish novelist, entrepreneur, and political and social commentator. Because he was the first novelist to deal with issues of the Industrial Revolution, he has been called the first political novelist in the English language. He was the founder of the city of Guelph in Canada, and father of Sir Alexander Tilloch Galt of Montreal. Galt's novels are best known for their depiction of Scottish rural life, tinged with ironic humor. He became acquainted with Lord Byron in 1809 during the cruise from Gibraltar to Malta; in 1810 their paths crossed again in Athens and at Smyrna. Galt was then a commercial traveler; the novels that made his reputation were written a decade later. When he next met Byron in London in 1811 he was still attempting to establish himself in business. The acquaintance then ripened into friendship.