Trees or shrubs, dioecious or monoecious. Exudate absent*. Unarmed*. Indumentum present, hairs lepidote, stellate or rarely simple. Stipules 0 or minute, free*, simple, unlobed, entire *, not spine-like*, not leaf-like*, without glands. Leaves distributed evenly along stem, alternate or very rarely opposite, simple, unlobed, base symmetrical, margin entire, blade not pellucid-punctate; glands on leaf absent; venation pinnate; domatia absent*; stipel-like appendages absent*. Petiole present, without swellings or bends at base or apex*, without glands. Inflorescence without axis, axillary, flowers in 3–4-flowered unisexual or bisexual clusters, each cluster at first completely enclosed within sheath of connate leaf-like bracts (involucre). Male flowers: sessile; sepals 2–6, partially to completely fused, greenish, or sepals 0; petals 0; disc 0; stamens 2–8, partially fused; anther without conspicuous modification, thecae in bud extrorse or introrse; pistillode absent (pistillode-like structures are present, these are reduced female flowers). Female flowers: pedicels 0 or very short, not articulated*; sepals 0; petals 0; disc 0; ovary locules 3, ovules per locule 1; style column 1*, entire*, stigmas flat, discoid or 3-lobed, surface smooth*; staminodes absent. Fruit indehiscent or tardily dehiscent, smooth at first*, becoming much wrinkled when dry, hairy, greenish to brown; seed black, shiny, carunculate, with no other covering nor membranous layer; embryo not minute, cotyledons flat, leaf-like.
An asterisk * indicates a state has been assumed but not yet confirmed.