This is the documentation for the Jinja general purpose templating language. Jinja is a library for Python that is designed to be flexible, fast and secure.

If you have any exposure to other text-based template languages, such as Smarty or Django, you should feel right at home with Jinja. It’s both designer and developer friendly by sticking to Python’s principles and adding functionality useful for templating environments.


Jinja works with Python 2.7.x and >= 3.5. If you are using Python 3.2 you can use an older release of Jinja (2.6) as support for Python 3.2 was dropped in Jinja version 2.7. The last release which supported Python 2.6 and 3.3 was Jinja 2.10.

If you wish to use the PackageLoader class, you will also need setuptools or distribute installed at runtime.


You can install the most recent Jinja version using pip:

pip install Jinja2

This will install Jinja in your Python installation’s site-packages directory.

Installing the development version

  1. Install git

  2. git clone git://

  3. cd jinja2

  4. ln -s jinja2 /usr/lib/python2.X/site-packages

As an alternative to steps 4 you can also do python develop which will install the package via distribute in development mode. This also has the advantage that the C extensions are compiled.

MarkupSafe Dependency

As of version 2.7 Jinja depends on the MarkupSafe module. If you install Jinja via pip it will be installed automatically for you.

Basic API Usage

This section gives you a brief introduction to the Python API for Jinja templates.

The most basic way to create a template and render it is through Template. This however is not the recommended way to work with it if your templates are not loaded from strings but the file system or another data source:

>>> from jinja2 import Template
>>> template = Template('Hello {{ name }}!')
>>> template.render(name='John Doe')
u'Hello John Doe!'

By creating an instance of Template you get back a new template object that provides a method called render() which when called with a dict or keyword arguments expands the template. The dict or keywords arguments passed to the template are the so-called “context” of the template.

What you can see here is that Jinja is using unicode internally and the return value is an unicode string. So make sure that your application is indeed using unicode internally.