Daphne du Maurier was born in London on May 13th, 1907. She was the second of 3 daughters born to Sir Gerald du Maurier and his wife, Lady Muriel Beaumont du Maurier. Her father was an actor and a manager. One of his claims to fame was starring in J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan, as the duel role of George Darling and Captain Hook. He was also a very good friend of Henry James. Lady Muriel was also a stage actress, starring as Portia in the Merchant of Venice. Because of her parents, du Maurier grew up around the theater and as a child met lot of stars.
In July of 1932, du Maurier married Lieutenant-General Sir Frederick "Boy" Browning. Together they had three children: daughter Tessa, born in 1933; daughter Flavia, born in 1937, and son Christian, born in 1940. Boy died in 1965 at which time du Maurier moved to Kilmarth.
In 1943 a dream of nearly two decades was fulfilled when du Maurier and her children moved into Menabilly, leased from the Rashleigh family for twenty years. The lease was ultimately extended and du Maurier much improved the place at her own expense, but in the late 1960s she was forced to move when one of the Rashleigh heirs chose to live there. Du Maurier was made Lady Browning in 1946 when her husband was knighted, and after the war Browning became comptroller of the treasurer to the then Princess Elizabeth, a position that kept him in London most of the time, with only infrequent trips home to Cornwall.
There were many rumors about du Maurier's sexuality. She was rumored to have been in bisexual relationship with British actress Gertrude Lawerence and had a deep attraction to her publisher's wife, Ellen Doubleday.
Daphne du Maurier died in April, 1989, at the age of 81 at her home in Cornwell. Her ashes were scattered at Kilmarth.