Climbing shrubs or erect, low or prostrate herbs. Leaves alternate, entire or 3-5 lobed, exstipulate, petiolate. Inflorescence solitary axillary, racemose or flowers in clusters. Flowers bisexual, actinomorphic or zygomorphic, epigynous. Perianth usually petaloid, brownish or purple, 3-lobed or with a unilateral limb, sometimes an inner whorl of 3 teeth present. Stamens 6-, free or adnate to the style forming a gynostegium; filaments short and thick or hardly separable from gynostegium; anthers free or united with the style with 2 parallel loculi, extrorse, dehiscing longitudinally. Ovary inferior, partly or completely partitioned into 4-6 loculi, placentation parietal or axile; ovules indefinite in each locules, anatropous horizontal or pendulous, style, short and stout; stigmas as many as the carpels. Fruit a septicidal capsule, dehiscing basally; seeds numerous, variable in form; endosperm copious and fleshy with a small embryo.