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It is characterised by the incorrectly-named Celtic fields, palisaded cattle enclosures and cremation burials either in urnfield cemeteries or under low, round barrows. Some cremations from this period were also inserted into pre-existing barrows. The people were livestock farmers.
The Deverel–Rimbury ware pottery they produced included distinctive globular vessels with fluted or channelled decoration and scratched lines along with squat, thick-walled bucket urns with cordoned decoration and fingerprint marks on the rims. The fabric is tempered with coarse flint.
The term is now normally only used to refer to the pottery types as modern archaeologists now believe that Deverel–Rimbury does not represent a single culture but numerous disparate societies who shared only certain technologies.