25 March 1306
On this day in 1306 Robert the Bruce was crowned King of Scotland
In August 1296, Robert the Bruce and his father swore fealty to Edward I of England at Berwick-upon-Tweed, but in breach of this oath, which had been renewed at Carlisle, the younger Robert supported the Scottish revolt against King Edward in the following year. On 7 July, Bruce and his followers made terms with Edward by a treaty called the Capitulation of Irvine. The Scottish lords were not to serve beyond the sea against their will, and were pardoned for their recent violence in return for swearing allegiance to King Edward. The Bishop of Glasgow, James the Steward, and Sir Alexander Lindsay became sureties for Bruce until he delivered his infant daughter Marjorie as a hostage. This he never did, and he was soon actively fighting for the Scots again.
Shortly after the Battle of Stirling Bridge, Bruce again defected to the Scots; he laid waste to Annandale and burned the English-held castle of Ayr. Yet, when King Edward returned to England after his victory at the Battle of Falkirk, Annandale and Carrick were excepted from the Lordships and lands which he assigned to his followers.
William Wallace resigned as Guardian of Scotland after the Battle of Falkirk. He was succeeded by Robert Bruce and John Comyn as joint Guardians, but they could not see past their personal differences. As a nephew and supporter of King John, and as someone with a serious claim to the Scottish throne, Comyn was Bruce’s enemy.
In the late summer of 1305 in a secret agreement sworn, signed and sealed, John Comyn agreed to forfeit his claim to the Scottish throne in favour of Robert Bruce upon receipt of the Bruce lands in Scotland should an uprising occur led by Bruce.
Comyn betrayed his agreement with Bruce to King Edward I, and when Bruce arranged a meeting for February 10, 1306 with Comyn in the Church of Greyfriars in Dumfries and accused him of treachery, they came to blows. Bruce killed Comyn in Dumfries before the high altar of the church of the monastery. Bruce was subsequently excommunicated as a result, less for the murder than for its location. From that moment on Robert the Bruce had no option but to become King or become a fugitive. Against that backdrop he asserted his claim to the Scottish throne.
Six weeks after Comyn was killed in Dumfries, Bruce was crowned King of Scots by Bishop William de Lamberton at Scone, the traditional seat of the Kings of Scotland. The royal robes and vestments which Robert Wishart had hidden from the English were brought out by the Bishop and set upon King Robert. The bishops of Moray and Glasgow were in attendance as well as the earls of Atholl, Menteith, Lennox, and Mar. The great banner of the kings of Scotland was planted behind his throne.
Isabella MacDuff, Countess of Buchan and wife of John Comyn, Earl of Buchan (a cousin of the murdered John Comyn) arrived the next day, too late for the coronation, so a second coronation was held and once more the crown was placed on the brow of Robert Bruce, Earl of Carrick, Lord of Annandale, King of the Scots.