A look back at the week ahead.

17 March 3446 BC: The day Noah entered the ark, according to the 19th- century religious scholar Gustav Seyffarth.

17 March 1912: Laurence Oates says: "I am just going outside and may be some time."

17 March 1845: Elastic bands patented by Stephen Perry of London.

18 March 1584: Ivan the Terrible dies of sorrow for the son he killed in a rage three days earlier.

18 March 1913: John Steinbecker receives US patent No. 1056602 for his mechanical scarecrow with automatic gun-firing mechanism.

18 March 1989: Britain's first national fat women's conference opens.

19 March 721 BC: According to Ptolemy, the date of the first eclipse recorded by the Babylonians.

19 March 1928: The Industrial Fatigue Research Board says a cup of tea aids efficiency and curbs industrial discontent.

20 March 1780: James Watt invents the duplicator to help cope with the extra office work generated by his invention of the steam engine.

20 March 1809: After Mary Bateman is executed at York, 2,500 people pay 3d each to see the body at Leeds infirmary. It is dissected, and the skin tanned and distributed.

21 March 1923: French scientists claim that smoking is beneficial because nicotine forms anti-bacterial compounds.

21 March 1963: Alcatraz Prison in San Francisco Bay closes.

21 March 1989: Bob Hawke, prime minister of Australia, cries on television while confessing his adultery and womanising, and thanks his wife for her understanding.

22 March 1774: First publication of "Baa, Baa, Black Sheep", in Tommy Thumb's Song Book by Mrs Mary Cooper.

22 March 1907: The New York Post describes Debussy's music as "the dreariest ... rubbish".

23 March 1861: London's first trams begin operation. They are designed by a Mr Train from New York.

23 March 1923: Publication of Yes, We Have No Bananas.

23 March 1925: The State of Tennessee bans the teaching of Darwin's Theory of Evolution.