Silas Deane (December 24, 1737 – September 23, 1789) was a delegate to the American Continental Congress and later the United States' first foreign diplomat.
Deane was born in Groton, Connecticut, the son of a blacksmith. He graduated from Yale in 1758 and in 1761 was admitted to the bar, he practiced law for a short time outside of Hartford before he became a merchant in Wethersfield, Connecticut. In Connecticut he taught the future double-spy Edward Bancroft.
He took an active part in the movements in Connecticut preceding the War of Independence, was elected to the state assembly in 1772, and from 1774 to 1776 was a delegate from Connecticut to the Continental Congress. Early in 1776, he was sent to France by Congress in a semi-official capacity, as a secret agent to induce the French government to lend its financial aid to the colonies. Subsequently he became, with Benjamin Franklin and Arthur Lee, one of the regularly accredited commissioners to France from Congress.