After the death of Margaret, the "maid of Norway," in 1290, Bruce's grandfather, the 6th Robert de Bruce, lord of Annandale, claimed the crown of Scotland as the son of Isabella, the second daughter of David, earl of Huntingdon, and greatgranddaughter of King David I.; but John de Baliol, grandson of Margaret, the eldest daughter of Earl David, was preferred by the commissioners of Edward I.
Its issue in 1292 in favour of Baliol led his grandfather to resign Annandale to his son, the 7th Robert de Bruce, who either then or after the death of his father in 1295 assumed the title of lord of Annandale.
Shortly afterwards Bruce appears again to have sided with his countrymen; Annandale was wasted, while he, as Walter of Hemingford says, "when he heard of the king's coming, fled from his face and burnt the castle of Ayr which he held."
Yet, when Edward was forced by home affairs to quit Scotland, Annandale and certain earldoms, including Carrick, were excepted from the districts he assigned to his followers, Bruce and other earls being treated as waverers whose allegiance might still be retained.
On his way he granted the Scottish estates of Bruce and his adherents to his own followers, Annandale falling to Humphrey de Bohun, 4th earl of Hereford.