In 1306 after the murder of his rival for the throne, John Comyn, Bruce declared himself rightful King of Scotland. It was on his way to his coronation at Scone that James Douglas, coming from Berwick, where he had been staying with Bishop Lamberton, rode to meet him and give his allegiance.
Barbour described the meeting thus," And when Douglas saw him coming he rode forward in haste and greeted him and made obeisance very courteously and told him all his conditions and who he was and how Clifford held his inheritance. Also that he came to do homage to him as his rightful king and was ready in everything to share his fortune. And when Bruce had heard his desire he received him with much pleasure and gave him men and arms. He felt he should be worthy, for his fathers all were doughty men. Thus they made their acquaintance that never afterwards by any chance of any kind was broken while they lived".
It is claimed that there and then Bruce did Douglas the supreme honour of dubbing him Sir James Douglas.