Bernard of Kilwinning (Died 1331)

By: Matthew D. Dyer

Bernard of Kilwinning (Died 1331) is understood to have been the author of the Declaration of Arbroath written in 1320 on behalf of King Robert the Bruce, in which the Scots declared their independence from England. In this document the author clearly states his belief in the Scots Israelite heritage by stating the following:

“We know, Most Holy Father and Lord, and from the chronicles and books of the ancients gather, that among other illustrious nations, ours, to wit the nation of the Scots has been distinguished by many honours; which passing from the greater Scythia through the Mediterranean Sea and Pillars of Hercules, and sojourning in Spain among the most savage tribes through a long course of time, could nowhere be subjugated by any people however barbarous and coming thence one thousand two hundred years after the outgoing of the people of Israel, they, by many victories and infinite toil, acquired for themselves the possessions in the West, which they now hold in their kingdom one hundred thirteen kings of their own royal stock, no stranger intervening, have reigned.”