Scandent shrubs (often erect in youth), without resin; branches sympodial with a series of circinate woody hooks in one plane. Leaves spread, simple, entire, often rosette-crowded, cuneiform, penninervous, reticulate-veined, glabrous, both surfaces minutely pitted, each pit with a peltate small hair secreting a waxlike substance; petiole articulated, scar on the twigs often saddle-shaped; stipules absent. Flowers ♀♂, actinomorphic small. Inflor. few or several times dichotomous or spike-like, often provided with said hooks and single reduced bract-like leaves, branches often recurved. Pedicels articulated. Bracts with a glandular-thickened base, margin fimbriate-membranous. Calyx tube short, at length adnate to the base of the ovary; lobes 5 inequal imbricate, enlarged and wing-like in fruit. Petals 5, united at the base, slightly contorted in bud. Stamens mostly 10, rarely 5, the episepalous slightly longer. Filaments with broadened base; anthers basifixed, ± introrse to ± latrorse, 2-celled, opening lengthwise. Ovary for the greater part inferior, consisting of 3 carpels, 1-celled, protruding into a nippleshaped elongation bearing 3 articulated erect styles with a punctiform or horseshoe-shaped stigmatic apex; nipple enlarging in fruit. Ovule 1, basal, ascending, with 2 integuments. Nut not dehiscent, crowned by the enlarged calyx. Seed roundish with testa intruding between the cerebral-like folds of the endosperm. Exocarp leathery. Embryo straight, erect, obliquely placed; cotyledons diverging; hypocotyl rather thick. Distr. Disjunct, ca 3 spp. in trop. W. Africa, and 9 in SE. Asia, from the Deccan to Burma, Indochina, Hainan, S. China, the Malay Peninsula, Borneo and Sumatra (cf. fig. 2).