Annual or perennial herbs, sometimes woody, erect, creeping, trailing or twining, sometimes parasitic and leafless. Leaves alternate, without stipules. Flowers regular. Sepals 5, free or connate, persistent. Corolla campanulate or funnel-shaped, 5-angled or 5-lobed. Stamens 5, epipetalous, alternating with the corolla lobes. Ovary superior, 2–4-locular, sometimes incompletely 2-locular, rarely separated into 2 free carpels; stigmas capitate or 2–8-lobed; Placentas axile or basal. Fruit usually a loculicidal capsule, opening in valves and leaving the dissepiments attached to the axis. 55 gen., cosmop.