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I'm new in English and I want to understand this sentence from Isaiah Berlin's The Hedgehog and the Fox:

"Rousseau must have strengthened, if he did not actually originate, his growing tendency to idealize the soil and its cultivators — the simple peasant, who for Tolstoy is a repository of almost as rich a stock of 'natural' virtues as Rousseau's noble savage."

  1. What does "the simple peasant" refer to in this sentence?
  2. What is the meaning of "a repository of almost as rich a stock of 'natural' virtues as Rousseau's noble savage"?

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  1. "The simple peasant" refers to the cultivators of the soil mentioned just before.

  2. Rousseau claimed that, before humanity was corrupted by civilization, people were noble savages with a lot of natural virtues. Tolstoy claimed that simple peasants had almost as many virtues as the noble savages.

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