With the accession of James VI of Scotland to England’s throne as James I, many English Catholics began hoping that the vexing question of religion would soon be resolved in a manner not unfavourable to their faith. James, after all, was the son of the Catholic Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots, and it seemed not impossible that he would convert to the Catholic faith. The diplomatic contact with Spain that would eventually produce the Treaty of 1604 was already in process and religious toleration was one element in the discussion. But the more significant grounds for Catholics’ hope came most certainly from the position on the English religious question enunciated by the King himself. As his reign began, James seemed to be demonstrating a more favourable attitude towards Catholics than towards Puritans. His Basilikon Down declared the Church of Rome and the Church of England ‘agree in the grounds’, while his first speech to Parliament in March 1604 characterized Catholicism as ‘a religion, falsely called Catholik, but trewly Papist’, while defining the Puritans, as ‘a sect rather than a Religion’.