'''(Franz) Joseph Haydn'''See Haydn's name. "Franz" was not used during Haydn's lifetime and is avoided by scholars today ("Haydn, Joseph" by James Webster in [ ''Grove Music Online''], accessed 18 January 2007). (; ; 31 MarchThe date is uncertain. Haydn himself told others he was born on this day (Geiringer (1982, 9); Jones (1810, 8)), but some of his family members reported 1 April instead (Geiringer). The difficulty arises from the fact that in Haydn's day official records recorded not the birth date but the date of baptism, which, in Haydn's case, was 1 April (Wyn Jones 2009, p. 2-3). 173231 May 1809) was a prominent and prolific Austrian composer of the Classical period. He was instrumental in the development of chamber music such as the piano trio and his contributions to musical form have earned him the epithets "Father of the Symphony" and "Father of the String Quartet".

Haydn spent much of his career as a court musician for the wealthy Esterházy family at their remote estate. Until the later part of his life, this isolated him from other composers and trends in music so that he was, as he put it, "forced to become original".Haydn made the remark to his friend and biographer Georg August Griesinger; cited from English version by Vernon Gotwals (Griesinger 1963:17). At the time of his death, aged 77, he was one of the most celebrated composers in Europe.

Joseph Haydn was the brother of Michael Haydnhimself a highly regarded composerand Johann Evangelist Haydn, a tenor. He was also a friend of Mozart and a teacher of Beethoven.