Keelback is a flat-file static site builder written in Python.

It’s designed to make categorising and maintaining the source content straightforward, while keeping a wiki-like (non-hierarchic) link structure.

Content is stored in txt files and rendered using Markdown, with templates written in html and rendered with Pystache. Static objects like stylesheets and images are not modified.


Pages can be categorised by arranging them in folders within the content directory. On export, the hierarchy is flattened and category pages are generated automatically for each folder. If a txt file exists with the same name as a category, it will overwrite the auto-generated category page.

The following content structure:

  ├─ index.txt
  ├─ 404.txt
  │  ...
  └─ recipes/
       ├─ risotto.txt
       └─ tortellini.txt

will be exported as:

  ├─ index.html
  ├─ 404.html
  ├─ recipes.html
  ├─ risotto.html
  └─ tortellini.html

with the file recipes.html generated automatically, containing a linked list of every html file in the ‘recipes’ category.


Pages can optionally include metadata, in the form of key-value pairs (one per line), separated from the main content by a delimiter (===== by default).

Title: Example Blog Post
Date: 01-09-2021

Only title and date are used by Keelback: title overrides the page’s filename (since the latter must also work as a URL slug), and date is used to sort time-based content like blog posts.

Dynamic Content

Pages are rendered using Pystache, a Python implementation of the Mustache logicless template system. This can also be used within page content to access other page and category objects within the site: