Monoecious (rarely dioecious) small to large trees, or shrubs. Leaves imparipinnate (up to 3 orders of division) or trifoliolate or unifoliolate, clustered at branch tips; stipules absent or drawn into two small ligules, or alate and fused to the petiole; rachis nodes constricted and articulated with the petiolules. Inflorescences terminal, compound (rarely simple) umbels or panicles (or corymbs). Flowers aggregated into umbels or solitary; pedicellate (or sessile); pedicels usually articulated with the ovary base, bisexual or unisexual; calyx minutely toothed or with an undulate rim; petals and stamens usually 4 or 5 (rarely to 8 or more); ovary (1–)2–5(–many)-locular, styles as many as ovary locules, free or variously connate, persistent. Fruit a succulent drupe, spherical or laterally compressed.
About 125 species, mostly in tropical and subtropical parts of Africa, South-east Asia, Australia and western Pacific (but not New Zealand); 15 species (1 naturalised) in Australia.