Half the population of his planet had been decimated by famine and war.
Kebir after Arabi Pasha and all his officers, from general to subaltern, had fled, and gave way only when decimated by the British field artillery firing case shot.
After seeing his comrades decimated by the plague at Constantinople he resolved to change his mode of life, and, on his return to Italy, after a rigorous pilgrimage and a period of ascetic retreat, became a monk in the Cistercian abbey of Casamari.
The Moors decimated the native population; when they in turn were expelled, the country lost not only a numerically large section of its inhabitants, but the section best able to develop its natural wealth.
Europeans are not quite so blithe on these matters, having seen the continent decimated twice in the past century by war.