Trees, shrubs, or (most Mal. spp.) lianas. Indument of simple hairs, rarely dendroid (Connarus spp.), often mixed with capitate-glandular hairs. Leaves spirally arranged, exstipulate, imparipinnate, rarely unifoliolate. Base of the petiole and petiolules thickened. Leaflets usually not strictly opposite, penninerved to triplinerved, entire, the base often slightly peltate. Inflorescences axillary, pseudoterminal or terminal, paniculate, bracteate; pedicels articulated near the apex. Flowers 5(-4)-merous, hypogynous, bisexual (rarely by abortion unisexual and then dioecious), heterotri- or -distylous. Sepals usually (in Mal. spp. always) free or confluent at the very base only. Petals free. Stamens free or coherent at the base, in 2 whorls, inner (epipetalous) ones nearly always smaller, not rarely sterile or staminodial, sometimes partly absent; anthers dorsifixed in the lower half, curving outwards in anthesis, dehiscing lengthwise and introrse. Pistils (8-)5(-3) or 1, epipetalous, free; ovary 1-celled, with 2 nearly basal to axillary, collateral, orthotropous or anatropous (in Mal. Connarus) ovules, one of which sometimes small and sterile. Fruits dry or more or less fleshy, one-seeded, usually opening by a ventral slit, sometimes also dehiscing along the dorsal side, rarely circumsciss at the base, sometimes indehiscent. Seed large, always with an arilloid, with or without endosperm; cotyledons thick, flat. Distribution. Genera 16, with an estimated number of c. 300-350 species, the family circumtropical, but predominantly developed in Africa, in Malaysia represented by 6 genera and c. 40 species.