Copy letter from Daphne du Maurier to Miss Julie Leisk

Scope and Content

Letter expresses gladness that Miss Leisk enjoys her books, admits she enjoys writing them. The last two books will not be so popular with readers as her novels but she found them fascinating to do. Key to writing books is to sit down at regular intervals and stick to routine and she has been fortunate enough to have an understanding late husband and children.

Administrative / Biographical History

Daphne du Maurier (1907-1989), novelist, was the daughter of the actor Sir Gerald du Maurier (1873-1934), and his wife Muriel, and the granddaughter of the artist and novelist George Louis Palmella Busson du Maurier (1834-1896), artist and novelist. Daphne du Maurier grew up in Cumberland Terrace, London, and Cannon Hall, Hampstead, but her family developed strong links with Cornwall after buying a riverside house near Fowey, and it was in Cornwall that Daphne settled. She began publishing stories and articles in 1928; her first novel, 'The Loving Spirit', was published in 1931 by Heineman. There followed 'The Progress of Julius' (Heineman, 1933) and 'Gerald, a portrait' (Gollancz, 1934) before her first enduring success, 'Jamaica Inn', which was published by Gollancz in 1936. Two years later she published her most significant and best-loved novel, 'Rebecca'. Besides these she published a number of other novels, short-stories and biographical portraits, blending history and literary art in some, while developing her own unique vision of the macabre in others. She published one volume of autobiography, 'Growing Pains' about her early life in 1977. In 1932 she married Frederick A. M. Browning, later Lieutenant-General Sir Frederick (d 1965); they had one son and two daughters.

Conditions Governing Access

Usual EUL conditions apply.

Acquisition Information


Other Finding Aids

None. 1 item only.

Archivist's Note

Description compiled by Christine Faunch, Acting Head of Archives and Special Collections, 17 Mar 2010. Revised Christine Faunch 19 Aug 2010. Modified 9 Jun 2011.

Conditions Governing Use

Usual EUL restrictions apply.


None expected

Related Material

Records relating to the Du Maurier family are contained in the following University of Exeter collections: EUL MSS 144, 206, 207, 276, 301, 307, 341, 342, 346, 351, 354, 359, 363, 400.

Other papers of Daphne du Maurier, particularly her letters, are held at many other repositories including the following: Bath Reference Library; Bodleian Library; BBC Written Archives Centre; British Library Department of Manuscripts; Cambridge University Library; Eton College Library; Manchester University (John Rylands Library); National Library of Scotland; Princeton University Library Manuscripts Division, USA; Rhodes House Library; University of Durham Library; University of Bradford Library; University of Bristol Library; University of Warwick (Modern Records Centre); West Yorkshire Archive Service. Sound recordings of interviews with du Maurier are held at the British Library National Sound Archive.