The did not have freedom or any political rights. Helots were assigned to citizens to carry out domestic work or work an allotted portion of land (kleros). The absence of a formal census prevents us from accurately assessing their number, though some estimates are possible. According to Herodotus, the Helots were seven times as numerous as the Spartans during the Battle of Plataea in 479 BCE...
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According to Herodotus, the Helots were seven times as numerous as the Spartans during the Battle of Plataea in 479 BCE. Spartans declared war on the helots each year to justify keeping them in subjection and many, particularly those acting with suspicious independence, were killed, so as to reduce the risk of a revolt and to show just how much control they had over their lesser counterpart...