Trees or shrubs, sometimes scrambling often
thorny. Leaves simple, alternate, sometimes opposite, lamina pinnately veined
or with veins from the base; stipules sometimes modified into spines.
Inflorescence in terminal or axillary cymes or mixed panicles or in axillary
fascicles. Flowers bisexual or rarely unisexual, shortly perigynous to
essentially epigynous. Calyx of 4 or 5 sepals, lobes triangular, valvate in
bud. Corolla with 4-5 petals, petals concave or hooded, often clawed. Stamens
4-5, distinct, alternate with the sepals, filaments adnate to the base of the
petals. Carpels 2-3(-5), syncarpous, ovary multilocular, ovule usually solitary
in each locule. Fruits usually drupaceous.