Royall Tyler (1757-1826) was an American jurist and playwright who wrote The Contrast in 1787 and published The Algerine Captive in 1797. He also wrote several legal tracts, six plays, a musical drama, two long poems, a semifictional travel narrative, The Yankey in London (1809), and essays. He was born in Boston, Massachusetts, he attended the Boston Latin School and then Harvard, where he earned a reputation as a quick-witted joker. After graduation, he joined the Continental Army. In late 1778, he returned to Harvard to study law, and was admitted to the Massachusetts bar in 1780. He opened a practice in Braintree, Massachusetts. In 1801, he was appointed to the Supreme Court of Vermont as an assistant judge, and was later elected chief justice.