Modern, GPS-guided combines can already cut a field without the driver touching the steering wheel for much of the time, and can cut and thresh a quantity of grain in a day — enough to make half a million loaves of bread — that would have required the work of a thousand peasants in the 18th century.
Add in that 17th century grain (well, OK, perhaps more by then, this is a medieval number) got 7 grains back for every seed corn. Last time I mentioned this one of our farmer readers here said that he didn’t actually know the multiple today but it was vastly more than that.
And our economics lesson for the day – the output of the tractor is the NHS. For we couldn’t have 10% of the population producing health care if we needed a thousand peasants in the field, could we?