Shrub, 30-90 cm. Leaves 4-9 cm, sessile or amplexicaul, broadly ovate to ovate-oblong, obtuse or rounded to subapiculate or subacute, when crushed not smelling of goats. Sepals 8-12 mm, markedly unequal, oblong-ovate to broadly ovate, enlarging in fruit, persistent. Petals 6-10 mm, obovate. Stamens shorter than petals to slightly exceeding them. Styles shorter than the ovary. Fruit baccate, 7-10 mm, broadly cylindric-ellipsoid to globose, reddish, becoming black, deciduous. Fl. 6-7. Woodland margins and stream banks, 250-1300 m.
W. Europe, scattered in S. Europe and Caucasia, N. Iran, W. Syria, N.W. Africa. Mainly in Euro-Sib. communities.