Sphinx uses the Jinja templating engine for its HTML templates. Jinja is a text-based engine, and inspired by Django templates, so anyone having used Django will already be familiar with it. It also has excellent documentation for those who need to make themselves familiar with it.
Do I need to use Sphinx' templates to produce HTML?
No. You have several other options:
- You can :ref:`write a custom builder <writing-builders>` that derives from :class:`~sphinx.builder.StandaloneHTMLBuilder` and calls your template engine of choice.
- You can use the :class:`~sphinx.builder.PickleHTMLBuilder` that produces pickle files with the page contents, and postprocess them using a custom tool, or use them in your Web application.
Jinja/Sphinx Templating Primer
The most important concept in Jinja is :dfn:`template inheritance`, which means that you can overwrite only specific blocks within a template, customizing it while also keeping the changes at a minimum.
Inheritance is done via two (Jinja) directives, extends and block.
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