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31st March

1732: * Franz Joseph Haydn, Austrian composer, considered the best of his age.

1811: * Robert Willhelm Bunsen, German physicist and chemist who invented the Bunsen burner.

1836: Charles Dickens' Pickwick Papers appeared as a part-monthly work.

1889: The 985ft. Eiffel Tower costing 260,000 was opened by the French Premier Tirard.

1935: * Richard Chamberlain, US actor who established himself in the TV series Dr. Kildare.

1943: * Christopher Walken, US film actor.

1959: The Dalai Lama fled Tibet following Chinese repression, and sought asylum in India.

1978: Red Rum won the Grand National for the third consecutive year and retired.

xxxx * = Date of birth

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