Trees deciduous [or evergreen], large, often buttressed, with soft wood, dioecious. Leaves alternate, long-petiolate; leaf blade simple, pubescent [or glabrous], lepidote, palmately 3-5-veined, margin entire or dentate. Inflorescences long, pendent spikes clustered at stem apices, male ones mostly branched, female ones usually simple [or axillary, solitary, simple spikes]. Bracts deciduous. Male flowers: calyx lobes 4-8, equal or unequal; petals absent [or 6-8, erect, greenish, narrowly triangular]; stamens 4-8, antesepalous; filaments elongate, somewhat flattened subulate; anthers basifixed, introrse or extrorse, incurved in bud, relatively short and ovoid, or if larger and ± oblong then conspicuously recurved; sterile ovary present or sometimes absent. Female flowers: calyx lobes 4-8, free or connate below ovary; petals and staminodes absent; ovary inferior, 1-loculed, with 4-8 parietal placentas; ovules numerous; styles 4-8, antesepalous, short, stout, with large, capitate or obliquely oblong-decurrent stigmas. Fruit a capsule, dehiscing apically between persistent styles [or shedding exocarp and dehiscing longitudinally]. Seeds numerous, ovoid or fusiform, tiny.