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Jekyll AsciiDoc Plugin (powered by Asciidoctor)

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A plugin for Jekyll (>= 3.0.0) that converts AsciiDoc source files in your site to HTML pages using Asciidoctor.

You’re viewing the documentation for the upcoming release. If you’re looking for the documentation for an older release, please refer to one of the following branches:


The plugin consists of three extensions:

Converter — Jekyll::AsciiDoc::Converter

Converts AsciiDoc files to HTML pages. This plugin currently uses Asciidoctor to convert AsciiDoc content.

Generator — Jekyll::AsciiDoc::Integrator

Promotes eligible AsciiDoc attributes (e.g., doctitle, id, author, and attributes that begin with the page attribute prefix) to page variables. These attributes are merged with the page variables defined in the front matter header.

Liquid Filters
  • asciidocify — Uses the converter from this plugin to convert a string of AsciiDoc content to HTML.

  • tocify_asciidoc — Generates a table of contents in HTML from the parsed AsciiDoc document of the current page (since 2.1.0).

These extensions are registered automatically when the jekyll-asciidoc gem is required.


To use this plugin, you must be using Jekyll >= 3.0.0 and Ruby >= 2.3.0 (with development headers installed). You should also be familiar with creating sites with Jekyll. If you’re not, you should first read the Jekyll documentation to familiarize yourself with how it works. Experience with AsciiDoc and Asciidoctor is also helpful, but not a requirement.

Like Jekyll, this plugin was designed for developers, so some assembly is required. That means you’ll be expected to edit configuration, modify HTML templates, and customize CSS to use it fully.


This plugin is packaged as a gem named jekyll-asciidoc and published to The plugin depends on the asciidoctor gem, which gets installed automatically.

Your method of installation will depend on whether you use Bundler to manage the dependencies for your Jekyll project.

Jekyll relies on several native gems, so it’s necessary to have the Ruby development headers (e.g., ruby.h) on your machine in order to install AsciiDoc Jekyll (due to the requirements of Jekyll). The instructions for how to install the Ruby development headers are platform-specific and outside of the scope of this document.
If you’re using RVM, you should add a .ruby-version file to the project so your shell automatically switches to the correct version of Ruby each time you enter the project. For more information, refer to the the page RVM Project Workflow.

Installation Using Bundler

If you’re using Bundler to manage the dependencies for your project (as recommended), simply add the jekyll-asciidoc gem to the :jekyll_plugins group in your Gemfile:

group :jekyll_plugins do
  gem 'jekyll-asciidoc'

Then, run the bundle command from Bundler to install the gem:

$ bundle

Jekyll will automatically activate any plugins listed in the :jekyll_plugins group.

If you want to keep the installed gems inside the project, use this command instead:

$ bundle --path=.bundle/gems
Subsequent calls to bundle will retain the path setting.

Keep in mind that the gems Bundler installs are linked to the current version of Ruby. If you switch Ruby versions, you’ll need to run bundle again.

Manual Installation

If you’re not using Bundler to manage the dependencies for your Jekyll project, you’ll need to install the gem manually:

$ [sudo] gem install jekyll-asciidoc
The sudo prefix is only required if you are installing gems into your system. To avoid this bad practice, we recommend using RVM (or another Ruby version manager), which sets up Ruby safely in your home directory.

Then add the jekyll-asciidoc gem to the list of gems for Jekyll to load in your site’s _config.yml file:

- jekyll-asciidoc

If you’re running Jekyll < 3.5.0, you’ll need to use gems in place of plugins:

- jekyll-asciidoc

Plugin Ordering

Since the jekyll-asciidoc plugin promotes page attributes to the front matter, it must run first. To make sure it does, rearrange the sequence of plugins in your Gemfile or _config.yml file so the jekyll-asciidoc plugin is listed before other plugins. By doing so, other plugins will be able to access any front matter that this plugin assigns.

Let’s consider the case of using the jekyll-archives plugin alongside the jekyll-asciidoc plugin.

group :jekyll_plugins do
  gem 'jekyll-asciidoc'
  gem 'jekyll-archives' (1)
  1. The jekyll-archives plugin should be listed after the jekyll-asciidoc plugin since it needs to access front matter that is promoted from the header of the AsciiDoc document.

Creating Pages

This plugin converts eligible AsciiDoc files located inside the source directory (by default, the project root) to HTML pages in the generated site. There are a few conditions that must be met in order for an AsciiDoc file to be eligible:

  1. The file must have an AsciiDoc file extension (see Configuration).

  2. The name of the file must not begin with a dot (.) or an underscore (_).[1]

  3. The file must not be located in a folder whose name begins with a dot (.) or an underscore (_) (unless the folder is a designated collection, such as _posts).[1]

  4. While you can use a Jekyll front matter header, it is not required.

Here’s a sample AsciiDoc file that meets these criteria:

layout: info
permalink: /sample/
= Sample Page

This is a sample page composed in AsciiDoc.
Jekyll converts it to HTML using {url-asciidoctor}[Asciidoctor].

puts "Hello, World!"

Alternatively, you can define the page variables directly in the AsciiDoc header, which we recommend:

= Sample Page
:page-layout: info
:page-permalink: /sample/

This is a sample page composed in AsciiDoc.
Jekyll converts it to HTML using {url-asciidoctor}[Asciidoctor].

puts "Hello, World!"

Page Attributes

Any AsciiDoc attribute defined in the AsciiDoc document header whose name begins with page-[2] gets promoted to a page variables. The part of the name after the page- prefix is lowercased and used as the variable name (e.g., page-layout becomes layout). The value is processed as YAML data (single-line form).

Since the attribute value is processed as YAML data, you can build nested data structure using the inline YAML syntax. For example, here’s how you can assign a value to the page.header.image page variable:

:page-header: { image: logo.png }

To define a page attribute that contains multiple words, use either a hyphen or underscore character to connect the words.

:page-short-name: slug
Page attributes must be defined in the document header. That means either putting them directly below the document title (the line beginning with a single equals sign in the sample above) or above all other AsciiDoc content if the document title is not defined in AsciiDoc. The AsciiDoc document header stops after the first blank line. For more details about the document header, see the Document Header chapter in the Asciidoctor User Manual.
You may use include directives in the the document header. However, you must ensure that the file included does not contain blank lines.
If an attribute defined in the header of an AsciiDoc document is not visible to another plugin or Liquid template, you may have a plugin ordering problem. See Plugin Ordering to learn how to fix it.

Specifying a Layout

The most commonly defined page variable is layout, which determines which template is used to wrap the generated content. Jekyll will look for a template file inside the _layouts folder whose root name matches the name of the layout. For example, if the layout variable has the value info, Jekyll looks for a layout template at the path _layout/info.html.

If the layout is empty, the auto-selected layout layout is used (documented in the list below). If the layout is unset or false, the AsciiDoc processor will generate a standalone document. In this case, the page will appear like an HTML file generated by the AsciiDoc processor directly (with the option header_footer: true). If the layout is ~, no layout is applied.

To review, here are the different ways to specify a layout using the AsciiDoc attribute page-layout:

  • :page-layout: info — use the layout named info (e.g., _layout/info.html)

  • not specified, :page-layout: or :page-layout: _auto — use the automatic layout (i.e., page for pages, post for posts, the singular form of the collection label for a document; if the auto-selected layout isn’t available, the layout default is used)

  • :!page-layout: or :page-layout: false — don’t use a layout; instead, generate a standalone HTML document

  • :page-layout: none or :page-layout: ~ — don’t use a layout or create a standalone HTML document (often produces an HTML fragment); use of the value ~ is discouraged; the value none is preferred

Disabling Publishing of a Page

To prevent a page from being published, set the page attribute named page-published to false (which, in turn, sets the page variable named published to false.

= Top Secret Info
:page-published: false

This page should not be published.

Implicit Page Variables

In addition to page attributes defined explicitly (e.g., layout, permalink, etc), the following implicit AsciiDoc attributes are also promoted to page variables:

  • doctitle (aka the document title) (becomes title)

  • id (becomes docid)

  • author

  • revdate (becomes date; value is converted to a DateTime object; not applied to pages)

Although not an implicit page variable, another very common page variable to set is page-description, which becomes description in the model.

Showing the Document Title

By default, when Asciidoctor converts your document, it does not include the document title in the body (aka content) part of the document that is passed to the layout. Instead, it skims off the document title and assigns it to the model as page.title. If you don’t see the document title on the generated page at first, that’s normal.

There are two ways to have the document title included in the page:

  1. Configure the layout to output the document title explicitly

  2. Configure Asciidoctor to include the document title in the body

The first option is the most typical. Somewhere in your layout, you should include the following statement:

<h1>{{ page.title }}</h1>

This approach gives you the most control over how the document title appears and what HTML is used to enclose it.

If, instead, you want the document title to be included in the body, add the following configuration to your site’s _config.yml file:

  - showtitle=@

It’s also possible to enable or override this setting per page.

= Page Title

Using either of these approaches, the document title will be shown on the generated page.

Giving Your Post the Time of Day

By default, all posts are assigned a date that is computed from the file name (e.g., the date for 2016-03-20-welcome.adoc is 2016-03-20). If you want to give your post a specific time as well, you can set the revdate attribute in the AsciiDoc header.

We recommend using the format YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS Z as shown in this example:

= Post Title
Author Name
:revdate: 2016-03-20 10:30:00 -0600

Lorem ipsum.

If you don’t provide a time zone in the date, the date is assumed to be in the same time zone as the site (which is your local time zone by default).

Alternatively, you can specify the date in the implicit revision line. In this case, you must substitute the colons in the time part with "h", "m", and "s", respectively, since the colon demarcates the revision remark.

= Post Title
Author Name
2016-03-20 10h30m00s -0600

Lorem ipsum.

Note that the revision line must be preceded by the implicit author line.

Classifying Your Post

In Jekyll, you classify a post by assigning it to categories and/or tags. While you can define them in the front matter, as normal, it’s also possible to omit the front matter and assign them in the AsciiDoc header instead.

The AsciiDoc attributes to use to assign categories and tags to your post are page-categories and page-tags, respectively. The attribute value must be expressed using the inline Array syntax for YAML, which is a comma-separated list of items surrounded by square brackets. If you only have one item, you can omit the brackets. In this case, you can also drop the plural from the attribute name.

= Introducing the Jekyll AsciiDoc Plugin
Author Name
:page-category: Tech
:page-tags: [ruby, jekyll, asciidoctor, ssg]

The Jekyll AsciiDoc plugin makes Jekyll awesome.
Because you can write posts like this one in AsciiDoc!

Recall that the value of page attributes is parsed as an inline YAML value.

Publishing a Draft Post

You can defer adding a date to a post until it’s ready to publish by making it a draft. To make a draft post, just place it in the _drafts folder instead of the _posts folder. But don’t include the date in the filename or AsciiDoc header.

To include the drafts when building the site, pass the --drafts flag to the jekyll command:

$ jekyll build --drafts

The date of each draft post will be based on the file’s last modification time.

When you’re ready to publish the post, move the file from the _drafts folder to the _posts folder and add a date prefix to the filename in the form YYYY-mm-dd- (e.g., 2021-06-26-). You can further refine this date, such as to specify the time and time zone, by defining the revdate attribute in the AsciiDoc header.

Enabling Liquid Preprocessing

Unlike other content files, the Liquid template preprocessor is not applied to AsciiDoc files by default (since version 2.0.0 of this plugin). If you want the Liquid template preprocessor to be applied to an AsciiDoc file (prior to the content being passed to the AsciiDoc processor), you must enable it by setting the liquid page variable (shown here defined using a page attribute).

AsciiDoc files may include a front matter header for defining page variables. If present, the front matter header must be the very first character of the file. The front matter header won’t be seen—​and could distort conversion—​if the front matter is preceded by whitespace or a Byte Order Mark (BOM).
Since version 2.0.0 of this plugin, you may exclude the front matter header, as shown in the second example above. Prior to version 2.0.0, you had to include at least an empty front matter header (except for posts). In these cases, you define all the page variables (e.g., layout) using AsciiDoc page attributes instead of in the front matter. You can also use a combination of both. When intermixed, the page attributes defined in the AsciiDoc header take precedence.

Liquid processing does not extend to files included using the AsciiDoc include directive (see #166).

If you’re using the Liquid include tag to include HTML into the AsciiDoc document, you need to enclose it in a passthrough block.

{% include file.html %}

This is necessary since AsciiDoc will escape HTML by default. To pass it through raw requires enclosing it in a passthrough block.

Extracting Excerpts

This plugin will extract an excerpt for any post or document in a collection if the excerpt page variable isn’t set using the same logic as for Markdown files. By default, it will use the content between the header and the first blank line. If the excerpt page variable is set, that value will be used instead. The excerpt will automatically be converted from AsciiDoc to embedded HTML whereever the excerpt property is referenced in a Liquid template.

{% post.excerpt %}
Since version 3.0.0 of this plugin, you no longer have to run the excerpt through the asciidocify filter since the conversion is already done for you. In fact, if you do, the HTML in the converted excerpt will be escaped, which is not what you want.

If you want to use a different excerpt separator for AsciiDoc files, set the excerpt_separator under the asciidoc key in the site configuration. For example, you can configure the plugin to use the line comment //more as the excerpt separator as follows:

  excerpt_separator: "\n//more\n"

If you’re only working with AsciiDoc files in your site, you can go ahead and set this for all files by using the top-level property:

excerpt_separator: "\n//more\n"

If the excerpt separator isn’t found, the content of the whole document is used instead.

By default, the excerpt is converted to HTML using the article doctype. If you want to use a different doctype, such as inline, you can set it in the site configuration as follows:

  excerpt_doctype: inline

You can also set the excerpt doctype per page using the page attribute named page-excerpt_doctype.

Building and Previewing Your Site

You can build your site into the _site directory using:

$ jekyll build

If you’re using Bundler, prefix each command with bundle exec:

$ bundle exec jekyll build

You can preview your site at http://localhost:4000 using:

$ jekyll serve

The serve command monitors the file system and rebuilds the site whenever a change is detected by default (i.e., watch mode). To disable watch mode, use the --no-watch flag:

$ jekyll serve --no-watch

You can also use the --watch flag with the build command:

$ jekyll build --watch

If you only want Jekyll to build files which have changed, and not the whole site, add the --incremental flag:

$ jekyll serve --incremental


$ jekyll build --watch --incremental

To see a report of all the files that are processed, add the --verbose flag:

$ jekyll build --verbose
If you add the --safe flag, third-party plugins such as this one are disabled by default. To reenable the plugin, you must add the name of the gem to the whitelist. See Running in Safe Mode for details.


This section describes the configuration options for this plugin, which are optional.

You should at least assign an empty Hash as a default (e.g., {}) to the asciidoc and asciidoctor keys in _config.yml, respectively, if you don’t plan on making any further customizations.

asciidoc: {}
asciidoctor: {}

Using these placeholder values prevents initialization from being performed more than once when using watch mode (see issue jekyll#4858).


Prior to version 2.0.0 of this plugin, the configuration keys in this section were defined as flat, top-level names (e.g., asciidoc_ext). These names are now deprecated, but still supported.

By default, this plugin uses Asciidoctor to convert AsciiDoc files. Because Asciidoctor is currently the only option, the default setting is equivalent to the following configuration in _config.yml:

  processor: asciidoctor
The asciidoc block should only appear once inside _config.yml. If you define any other options that are documented in this section, you should append them to the asciidoc block.

To tell Jekyll which file extensions to match as AsciiDoc files, append the ext option to the asciidoc block of your _config.yml:

  ext: asciidoc,adoc,ad

The extensions shown in the previous listing are the default values, so you don’t need to specify this option if those defaults are sufficient.

AsciiDoc attributes defined in the document header whose names begin with page- are promoted to page variables. The part of the name after the page- prefix is used as the key (e.g., page-layout becomes layout). If you want to change this attribute prefix, append the page_attribute_prefix option to the asciidoc block of your _config.yml:

  page_attribute_prefix: jekyll

A hyphen is automatically added to the value of this configuration setting if the value is non-empty (e.g, jekyll-).

Since version 2.0.0 of this plugin, all non-hidden AsciiDoc files are processed by default, even those without a front matter header. If you only want files containing a front matter header to be processed (as was the behavior prior to version 2.0.0), add the require_front_matter_header option to the asciidoc block of your _config.yml:

  require_front_matter_header: true


In addition to the built-in attributes in AsciiDoc, the following additional AsciiDoc attributes are automatically defined by this plugin and available to all AsciiDoc-based pages:

site-root=(absolute path of root directory)
site-source=(absolute path of source directory)
site-destination=(absolute path of output directory)
site-baseurl=(value of the baseurl config option)
site-url=(value of the url config option)
jekyll-version=(value of the Jekyll::VERSION constant)

The following additional attributes are defined per page:

outpath=(path of page relative to baseurl)

You can pass custom attributes to AsciiDoc, or override default attributes provided by the plugin, using the attributes option of the asciidoctor block in your _config.yml. The value of this option can either be an Array containing key-value pairs:

  - idprefix=_
  - source-highlighter=pygments
  - pygments-css=style

or key-value pairs defined as a Hash:

    idprefix: _
    source-highlighter: pygments
    pygments-css: style

When using the Hash syntax, you must use an empty string value to set a valueless attribute such as sectanchors:

    sectanchors: ''

By default, an attribute value defined in _config.yml overrides the same attribute set in the front matter or header of a document. For example, if you set page-layout in _config.yml, you won’t be able to set it per page.

  - page-layout=false

If you want to allow individual pages to be able to override the attribute, append the charcter @ to the value in _config.yml:

  - page-layout=false@

You may use attribute references in the attribute value to reference any attribute that’s already defined, including implicit attributes. For example, to set the iconsdir attribute based on the imagesdir attribute, use the following:

    imagesdir: /images
    iconsdir: '{imagesdir}/icons'
If the value begins with an attribute reference, and you’re defining the attributes using the Hash syntax, you must enclose the value in quotes. There are additional edge cases when the value must be enclosed in quotes, so it’s generally recommended to use them.

Since version 2.1.0 of this plugin, you can remove a previously defined attribute by prefixing the name with a minus sign (without any space between):


In addition to attributes, you may define any other option key (e.g., safe) recognized by the Asciidoctor API. One of those options is base_dir, which is covered in the next section.

Specifying the Base Directory

In Asciidoctor, the base directory (i.e., base_dir option) is used as the root when resolving relative include paths in top-level documents.

By default, this plugin does not specify a base directory when invoking the Asciidoctor API. Asciidoctor will therefore use the current working directory (i.e., the project root) as the base directory.

If your source directory is not the project root, and you want Asciidoctor to use the source directory as the base directory, set the value of the base_dir option to :source.

  base_dir: :source

If, instead, you want the base directory to track the directory of the document being processed, and you’re using Jekyll 3 or better, you can set the value of the base_dir option to :docdir. This behavior matches how Asciidoctor works when running it outside of Jekyll. Since the base directory is also the jail, we also recommend setting the safe option to enable unsafe mode so you can still resolve paths outside of this directory.

  base_dir: :docdir
  safe: unsafe

You can also set the base_dir option to any relative or absolute path. In that case, the same value will be used for all documents.

Using AsciiDoc attributes in a Liquid template

Let’s say you want to reuse your AsciiDoc attributes in a Liquid template. This section describes how to do it.

Liquid can only access simple data structures, not complex ones like the one used to store site-wide AsciiDoc attributes. (Site-wide AsciiDoc attributes are stored deep within the Jekyll configuration data as a Hash with symbol keys). This puts them out of the reach of Liquid templates by default.

This plugin must store site-wide AsciiDoc attributes in this way due to how Jekyll is implemented and the lifecycle it exposes for plugins. That part can’t be changed. The plugin is limited by Jekyll’s design. However, YAML provides a mechanism that we can leverage to expose these attributes to our Liquid templates.

First, you define your AsciiDoc attributes at the top level of your configuration file where Liquid is able to access them. If you also assign a YAML reference to this key, you can then pass that Hash to the attributes key in the asciidoctor block, thus allowing the configuration to be shared.

asciidoc_attributes: &asciidoc_attributes
  attributes: *asciidoc_attributes

You can now reference one of the site-wide AsciiDoc attributes in the Liquid template as follows:

{{ site.asciidoc_attributes.imagesdir }}

Keep in mind that the value of the attribute will be unmodified from the value defined in the configuration file.

Enabling Hard Line Breaks Globally

Many Jekyll users are used to writing in GitHub-flavored Markdown (GFM), which preserves hard line breaks in paragraph content. Asciidoctor supports this feature for AsciiDoc files. (In fact, previous versions of this plugin enabled this behavior by default). If you want to enable this behavior for AsciiDoc files, add the hardbreaks attribute to the Asciidoctor attributes configuration in your site’s _config.yml file:

  - hardbreaks

If you still want to allow individual files to be able to override the attribute, append the charcter @ to the value in the site configuration:

  - hardbreaks=@

If you already have AsciiDoc attributes defined in the _config.yml, the new attribute should be added as a sibling entry in the YAML collection.

Keep in mind, if you enable hard line breaks, you won’t be able to use the one sentence-per-line writing technique.

Running in Safe Mode

If you want to use this plugin when running Jekyll in safe mode, you must add the jekyll-asciidoc gem to the whitelist in your site’s _config.yml file:

- jekyll-asciidoc

Safe mode is enabled either through the --safe flag:

$ jekyll build --safe

or the safe configuration option in your site’s _config.yml file:

safe: true

Working with AsciiDoc Content in Templates

Jekyll uses the Liquid templating language to process templates. This plugin defines two additional Liquid filters, asciidocify and tocify_asciidoc, for working with AsciiDoc content in those templates.

Converting a String from AsciiDoc

You can use the asciidocify filter to convert an arbitrary AsciiDoc string anywhere in your template. This filter allows you to compose site-wide data in AsciiDoc, such your site’s description or synopsis, then convert it to HTML for use in the page template(s).

Let’s assume you’ve defined a page variable named synopsis that you want treat as AsciiDoc. You can convert it in your template as follows:

{{ page.synopsis | asciidocify }}

By default, the AsciiDoc content is parsed as an embedded AsciiDoc document. If the content represents a single paragraph, and you only want to perform inline substitutions on that content, add the inline doctype as the filter’s first argument:

{{ page.synopsis | asciidocify: 'inline' }}

Generating a Table of Contents

Since version 2.1.0 of this plugin, you can use the tocify_asciidoc filter to generate a table of contents from the content of any page that is generated from AsciiDoc. This filter gives you the ability to place this table of contents anywhere inside the page layout, but outside the main content.

You apply the tocify_asciidoc filter to page.document, the page variable that resolves to the parsed AsciiDoc document, as shown here:

{{ page.document | tocify_asciidoc }}

The number of section levels (i.e., depth) shown in the table of contents defaults to the value defined by the toclevels attribute in the AsciiDoc document. To tune the number of levels, pass a numeric value as the filter’s first argument.

{{ page.document | tocify_asciidoc: 3 }}

When you use the tocify_asciidoc filter, you’ll also want to disable the toc attribute in your document. You can do this using a conditional preprocessor directive.

= Guide
:toc: left

== Section A


== Section B


By default, the tocify_asciidoc filter will insert a table of contents on any page that has even one section below the page title. It’s possible to conditionally disable this by using a Liquid if statement in your template with a custom attribute, similar to:

{% if != false %}
 <div class="toc">
   {{ page.document | tocify_asciidoc }}
{% endif %}

Then in the front matter of pages where you do not want a table of contents to appear, use the attribute :page-show-toc: false. Note that since this example uses a custom attribute, its name can be anything you’d like, it only needs to start with with page-. If you change the attribute name from this example, be sure to update the it in the if statement as appropriate.

Customizing the Generated HTML

You can use templates to customize the HTML output that Asciidoctor generates for your site. Template files can be composed in any templating language that is supported by Tilt. Each template file corresponds to a node in the AsciiDoc document tree (aka AST).

Below are the steps you need to take to configure Asciidoctor to use custom templates with your site.

Step 1: Add Required Gems

You’ll first need to add the thread_safe gem as well as the gem for the templating language you plan to use. We’ll assume that you are using Slim.

gem 'slim', '~> 3.0.7'
gem 'thread_safe', '~> 0.3.5'

Step 2: Install New Gems

Now run the bundle command to install the new gems.

$ bundle

Step 3: Create a Templates Folder

Next, create a new folder in your site named _templates to store your templates.

$ mkdir _templates

Step 4: Configure Asciidoctor to Load Templates

In your site’s _config.yml file, configure Asciidoctor to load the templates by telling it the location where the templates are stored.

  template_dir: _templates
  attributes: ...

Step 5: Compose a Template

The final step is to compose a template. We’ll be customizing the unordered list node. Name the file ulist.html.slim.

- if title?
  figure.list.unordered id=id
    ul class=[style, role]
      - items.each do |_item|
          - if _item.blocks?
- else
  ul id=id class=[style, role]
    - items.each do |_item|
        - if _item.blocks?

The next time you build your site, Asciidoctor will use your custom template to generate the HTML for unordered lists.

You can find additional examples of custom templates in the asciidoctor-backends repository.

Enabling Asciidoctor Extensions

You enable Asciidoctor extensions in much the same way as this plugin. You just need to get Jekyll to load the source.

If the extension you want to use is published as a gem, and you’re using Bundler to manage the dependencies for your project (as recommended), then you simply add the gem to the jekyll_plugins group in your Gemfile:

group :jekyll_plugins do
  gem 'asciidoctor-extension-xyz'

Then, run the bundle command from Bundler to install the gem:

$ bundle

If you’re not using Bundler to manage the dependencies for your Jekyll project, you’ll need to install the gem manually. Once that’s done, add the gem to the list gems for Jekyll to load in your site’s _config.yml file:

- asciidoctor-extension-xyz

If you’re running Jekyll < 3.5.0, you’ll need to use gems in place of plugins:

- asciidoctor-extension-xyz

If the extension you want to use is not published as a gem, or is something you’re developing, then you’ll load it like an ad-hoc Jekyll plugin. Add the file asciidoctor-extensions.rb to the _plugins folder of your project root (creating the folder if it does not already exist) and populate the file with the following content:

require 'asciidoctor/extensions'

Asciidoctor::Extensions.register do
  treeprocessor do
    process do |doc|

Asciidoctor will automatically enable the extensions in this file when it is loaded by Jekyll.

For a concrete example of using an Asciidoctor extension, refer to the next section.

Enabling Asciidoctor Diagram

Asciidoctor Diagram is a set of extensions for Asciidoctor that allow you to embed diagrams generated by PlantUML, Graphviz, ditaa, Shaape, and other plain-text diagram tools inside your AsciiDoc documents. In order to use Asciidoctor Diagram in a Jekyll project successfully, you must use a version of this plugin >= 2.0.0. Other combinations are known to have issues.

For Graphviz and PlantUML diagram generation, Graphviz must be installed (i.e., the dot utility must be available on your $PATH.
To follow a start-to-finish tutorial that covers how to integrate Asciidoctor Diagram, see this gist.


Using Bundler

Add the asciidoctor-diagram gem to your Gemfile:

group :jekyll_plugins do
  gem 'asciidoctor-diagram', '~> 1.5.4' # # (1)
  gem 'jekyll-asciidoc'
  1. Customize the version of Asciidoctor Diagram as needed.

Then, run Bundler’s install command to install the new gem:

$ bundle
Without Bundler

Install gems manually

$ [sudo] gem install asciidoctor-diagram

Then, add the asciidoctor-diagram gem to the list of plugins for Jekyll to load in your site’s _config.yml file:

- asciidoctor-diagram
- jekyll-asciidoc

If you’re running Jekyll < 3.5.0, you’ll need to use gems in place of plugins:

- asciidoctor-diagram
- jekyll-asciidoc

The preceding configurations are equivalent to passing -r asciidoctor-diagram to the asciidoctor command.

Generated Image Location

Asciidoctor Diagram needs some context in order to write the images to the proper location. At a minimum, you must set the following configuration in _config.yml:

  base_dir: :docdir
  safe: unsafe

With this configuration, Asciidoctor Diagram will generate images relative to the generated HTML page (i.e., in the same directory) within the destination folder.

Jekyll will delete the images Asciidoctor Diagram generates unless you follow the instructions in Preserving Generated Images.

You can use the following example to test your setup:

= Diagram Sample

digraph g {
    a -> b
    b -> c
    c -> d
    d -> a

If you prefer to serve all images from the same folder, assign a value to the imagesdir attribute that is relative to the site root:

  base_dir: :docdir
  safe: unsafe
    imagesdir: /images

With this configuration, Asciidoctor Diagram will generate images into the images directory within the destination folder.

Jekyll will delete the images Asciidoctor Diagram generates unless you follow the instructions in Preserving Generated Images.

Preserving Generated Images

Since Asciidoctor Diagram writes to the output folder, you have to instruct Jekyll not to remove these generated files in the middle of the build process. One way to do this is to apply a “monkeypatch” to Jekyll. Add the file jekyll-ext.rb to the _plugins folder of your project root (creating the folder if it does not already exist) and populate the file with the following content:

class Jekyll::Cleaner
  def cleanup!; end

An alternative to the monkeypath approach is to identify folders that contain generated images in the keep_files option in _config.yml:

- images
  base_dir: :docdir
  safe: unsafe
    imagesdir: /images

Enabling STEM Support

Thanks to Asciidoctor, Jekyll AsciiDoc provides built-in support for processing STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math) equations in your AsciiDoc documents. To enable this support, you just need to do a bit of configuration.

Activating the STEM processing

The first thing you need to do is activate the STEM processing integration in the processor itself. To do that, set the stem attribute on the document. One way is to set the stem attribute in the document header:

= Page Title

Alternatively, you can enable it the stem attribute globally for all AsciiDoc documents in your site by adding the following to your site’s _config.yml file:

  - stem

To learn more about the built-in STEM integration, see the STEM chapter in the Asciidoctor User Manual.

Adding the STEM assets to the page

Technically, Asciidoctor only prepares the STEM equations for interpretation by MathJax. That means you have to load MathJax on any page that contains STEM equations (or all pages, if that’s easier). To do so requires some customization of the page layout.

First, create the file _includes/mathjax.html and populate it with the following contents:

<script type="text/x-mathjax-config">
  messageStyle: "none",
  tex2jax: {
    inlineMath: [["\\(", "\\)"]],
    displayMath: [["\\[", "\\]"]],
    ignoreClass: "nostem|nolatexmath"
  asciimath2jax: {
    delimiters: [["\\$", "\\$"]],
    ignoreClass: "nostem|noasciimath"
  TeX: { equationNumbers: { autoNumber: "none" } }
<script src=""></script>

Then, include this file before the closing </body> tag in your page layout.

{% include mathjax.html %}

With that configuration in place, the STEM equations in your AsciiDoc file will be presented beautifully using MathJax.

Adding Supplemental Assets

Certain Asciidoctor features, such as icons, require additional CSS rules and other assets to work. These CSS rules and other assets do not get automatically included in the pages generated by Jekyll. This section documents how to configure these additional resources.

If you want to take a shortcut that skips all this configuration, clone the Jekyll AsciiDoc Quickstart (JAQ) repository and use it as a starting point for your site. JAQ provides a page layout out of the box configured to fully style body content generated from AsciiDoc.


The Jekyll AsciiDoc plugin converts AsciiDoc to embeddable HTML. This HTML is then inserted into the page layout. You need to augment the layout to include resources typically present in a standalone HTML document that Asciidoctor produces.

  1. Create a stylesheet in the css directory named asciidoc.css to hold additional CSS for body content generated from AsciiDoc.

  2. Add this stylesheet to the HTML <head> in _includes/head.html under the main.css declaration:

    <link rel="stylesheet" href="{{ '/css/asciidoc.css' | prepend: site.baseurl }}">

Stylesheet for Code Highlighting

Asciidoctor integrates with Pygments to provide code highlighting of source blocks in AsciiDoc content.

To enable Pygments, you must install the pygments.rb gem. To do so, add the pygments.rb gem to your Gemfile:

gem 'pygments.rb', '~> 2.1.0'

As part of this integration, Asciidoctor generates a custom stylesheet tailored specially to work with the HTML that Asciidoctor produces. Since this stylesheet is backed by the Pygments API, it provides access to all the themes in Pygments

This plugin will automatically generate a stylesheet for Pygments into the source directory if the AsciiDoc attributes in your site’s _config.yml are configured as follows:

  • source-highlighter has the value pygments

  • pygments-css has the value class or is not set

  • pygments-stylesheet is not unset (if set, it can have any value)

By default, the stylesheet is written to stylesdir + pygments-stylesheet. If the pygments-stylesheet attribute is not specified, the value defaults to asciidoc-pygments.css. You can customize this value to your liking.

The Pygments theme is selected by the value of the pygments-style attribute. If this attribute is not set, it defaults to vs.

The stylesheet file will be created if it does not yet exist or the theme has been changed. Jekyll will handle copying the file to the output directory.

You’ll need to add a line to your template to link to this stylesheet, such as:

<link rel="stylesheet" href="{{ '/css/asciidoc-pygments.css' | prepend: site.baseurl }}">

To disable this feature, either set the pygments-css to style (to enable inline styles) or unset the pygments-stylesheet attribute in your site’s _config.yml.

It may still be necessary to make some tweaks to your site’s stylesheet to accomodate this integration.

Font-based Admonition and Inline Icons

To enable font-based admonition and inline icons, you first need to add Font Awesome to _includes/head.html file under the asciidoc.css declaration:

<link rel="stylesheet" href="">
You can also link to a local copy of Font Awesome.

Next, you need to add the following CSS rules from the default Asciidoctor stylesheet to the css/asciidoc.css file:

span.icon > .fa {
  cursor: default;
.admonitionblock td.icon {
  text-align: center;
  width: 80px;
.admonitionblock td.icon [class^="fa icon-"] {
  font-size: 2.5em;
  text-shadow: 1px 1px 2px rgba(0,0,0,.5);
  cursor: default;
.admonitionblock td.icon .icon-note:before {
  content: "\f05a";
  color: #19407c;
.admonitionblock td.icon .icon-tip:before {
  content: "\f0eb";
  text-shadow: 1px 1px 2px rgba(155,155,0,.8);
  color: #111;
.admonitionblock td.icon .icon-warning:before {
  content: "\f071";
  color: #bf6900;
.admonitionblock td.icon .icon-caution:before {
  content: "\f06d";
  color: #bf3400;
.admonitionblock td.icon .icon-important:before {
  content: "\f06a";
  color: #bf0000;

Feel free to modify the CSS to your liking.

Finally, you need to enable the font-based icons in the header of the document:

:icons: font

or in the site configuration:

  - icons=font

Circled Callout Numbers

Circled callout numbers are also linked to the icons=font setting, even though they don’t rely on the Font Awesome font. To enable them, you need to add the following additional CSS to the css/asciidoc.css file:

.conum[data-value] {
  display: inline-block;
  color: #fff !important;
  background: rgba(0,0,0,.8);
  -webkit-border-radius: 1em;
  border-radius: 1em;
  text-align: center;
  font-size: .75em;
  width: 1.67em;
  height: 1.67em;
  line-height: 1.67em;
  font-family: "Open Sans", "DejaVu Sans", sans-serif;
  font-style: normal;
  font-weight: bold;
.conum[data-value] * {
  color: #fff !important;
.conum[data-value] + b {
  display: none;
.conum[data-value]::after {
  content: attr(data-value);
pre .conum[data-value] {
  position: relative;
  top: -.125em;
b.conum * {
  color: inherit !important;
.conum:not([data-value]):empty {
  display: none;

Image-based Admonition and Inline Icons

As an alternative to font-based icons, you can configure Asciidoctor to use image-based icons. In this case, all you need to do is provide the icons at the proper location.

First, enable image-based icons and configure the path to the icons in the header of the document:

:iconsdir: /images/icons

or your site configuration:

  - icons
  - iconsdir=/images/icons

Then, simply put the icon images that the page needs in the images/icons directory.

Publishing Your Site

This section covers several options you have available for publishing your site, including GitHub Pages and GitLab Pages.

Using this Plugin on GitHub Pages

GitHub doesn’t (yet) whitelist the AsciiDoc plugin, so you must run Jekyll either on your own computer or on a continuous integration (CI) server.

GitHub needs to hear from enough users that need this plugin to persuade them to enable it. Our recommendation is to contact support and keep asking for it. Refer to the help page Adding Jekyll Plugins to a GitHub Pages site for a list of plugins currently supported on GitHub Pages.

But don’t despair! You can still automate publishing of the generated site to GitHub Pages using a continuous integration job. Refer to the Automate GitHub Pages publishing with Jekyll and Travis CI tutorial to find step-by-step instructions. You can also refer to the Transfuse website build for an example in practice.

In fact, if you’re using Travis CI, it’s even easier than that. Travis CI provides a deployer for GitHub Pages! Using this deployer, Travis CI can push your generated site to GitHub Pages after a successful build on your behalf, as long as you’ve completed these steps:

  1. Create a personal access token on GitHub that has write access to your GitHub repository (public_repo or repo scope)

  2. Define the token as a secure variable name GITHUB_TOKEN on the Travis CI settings page for your repository

  3. Add a deploy configuration to your CI job configuration

Here’s a sample deploy configuration you can use:

  provider: pages
  github-token: $GITHUB_TOKEN
  local-dir: _site
  target-branch: gh-pages
  skip-cleanup: true
  keep-history: true
    branch: master
When using this setup, don’t forget to add the .nojekyll file to the root of the source directory to tell GitHub Pages not to waste time running Jekyll again on the server.

Jekyll AsciiDoc Quickstart

If you want to take a shortcut that skips all the steps in the previously mentioned tutorial, clone the Jekyll AsciiDoc Quickstart (JAQ) repository and use it as a starting point for your site. JAQ includes a Rake build that is preconfigured to deploy to GitHub Pages from Travis CI and also provides a theme (page layout and CSS) that properly styles body content generated from AsciiDoc.

Feeling Responsive

If you’re looking for a Jekyll theme that provides comprehensive and mature styles and layouts out of the box, check out the Feeling Responsive theme. It includes integration with this plugin, which you simply have to enable. Refer to the Getting Started page for a step-by-step guide to get your site started and feeling responsive.

Using this Plugin on GitLab Pages

Deployment to GitLab Pages is much simpler. That’s because GitLab allows you to control the execution of Jekyll yourself. There’s no need to mess around with CI jobs and authentication tokens. You can find all about how to use Jekyll with GitLab Pages in the tutorial Hosting on with GitLab Pages. More in-depth information regarding setting up your repository for GitLab Pages can be found in the GitLab Enterprise Edition / Pages documentation.

Assuming the following are true:

  1. The source of your site resides on the master branch (though you can use any branch for this purpose).

  2. You’re using Bundler to manage the dependencies for your project.

You can then use the following .gitlab-ci.yml file to get starting hosting your Jekyll site on GitLab Pages.

image: ruby:2.5
  - .bundle
- bundle --path .bundle/gems
  - bundle exec jekyll build -d public --config _config.yml,_config-gitlab.yml -q
    - public
  - master

This script runs Jekyll on the official Ruby Docker container.

You also need to add an additional configuration file, _config-gitlab.yml, to set the url and baseurl options when deploying your site to GitLab Pages.

url: https://<username> # # (1)
baseurl: /<projectname> # # (2)
  1. Replace <username> with your GitLab username or group.

  2. Replace <projectname> with the basename of your project repository.

The next time you push to the master branch, the GitLab Pages runner will execute Jekyll and deploy your site to https://<username><projectname>, where <username> is your GitLab username or group and <projectname> is the basename of your project repository.

Like GitHub Pages, you can also have your site respond to a custom domain name, which is explained in the referenced tutorial. In this case, update the _config-gitlab.yml file with the appropriate values.

At this time, GitLab Pages only works with projects hosted at or on self-hosted GitLab Enterprise Edition instances. GitLab Community Edition does not support continuous integration and cannot host pages.

Getting Help

The Jekyll AsciiDoc plugin is developed to help you publish your content quickly and easily. But we can’t achieve that goal without your input. Your questions and feedback help steer the project, so speak up! Activity drives progress.

When seeking answers, always start with the official documentation for Jekyll, which can be found on the Jekyll website. If you have general questions about Jekyll, we recommend you visit the Jekyll Talk forum to get assistance. For questions related to this extension specifically, or general questions about AsciiDoc, please post to the Asciidoctor discussion list. You can also join us in the asciidoctor/asciidoctor channel on Gitter. For general information about AsciiDoc, look no further than the Asciidoctor User Manual.

Filing Bug Reports and Feature Requests

This project uses the GitHub issue tracker to manage bug reports and feature requests. If you encounter a problem, please browse or search the issues to find out if your problem has already been reported. If it has not, you may submit a new issue.

The best way to get a timely response and quick fix for your issue is to write a detailed report and respond to replies in a timely manner.

If you know Ruby (or you’re willing to learn), we encourage you to submit a pull request. Please include an RSpec behavior that describes how your feature should work or demonstrates the problem you’re encountering. Make sure to send your pull request from a branch in your fork. If the pull request resolves an issue, please name the branch using the issue number (e.g., issue-N, where N is the issue number).

If you aren’t able to submit a pull request, please provide a sample so that the developers can reproduce your scenario.


To help develop the Jekyll AsciiDoc plugin, or to simply use the development version, you need to retrieve the source from GitHub. Follow the instructions below to learn how to clone the source, run the tests and install the development version.

Retrieve the Source Code

You can retrieve the source code from GitHub using git. Simply copy the URL of the GitHub repository and pass it to the git clone command:

git clone

Next, switch to the project directory.

$ cd jekyll-asciidoc

Install the Dependencies

The dependencies needed to develop the Jekyll AsciiDoc plugin are defined in the Gemfile at the root of the project. You’ll use Bundler to install these dependencies.

To check if you have Bundler installed, use the bundle command to query for the version:

$ bundle --version

If Bundler is not installed, use the gem command to install it.

$ [sudo] gem install bundler

Finally, invoke the bundle command (which is provided by the bundler gem) from the root of the project to install the dependencies into the project:

$ bundle --path=.bundle/gems
Since we’ve installed dependencies inside the project, it’s necessary to prefix all commands (e.g., rake) with bundle exec.

Running the Tests

The tests are based on RSpec. The test suite is located in the spec directory.

You can run the tests using Rake.

$ bundle exec rake spec

For more fine-grained control, you can also run the tests using RSpec directly.

$ bundle exec rspec

If you only want to run a selection of tests, you can do so by assigning those specifications a tag and filtering the test run accordingly.

Start by adding the focus tag to one or more specifications:

it 'should register AsciiDoc converter', focus: true do
  expect(site.converters.any? {|c| ::Jekyll::AsciiDoc::Converter === c }).to be true

Then, run RSpec with the focus flag enabled:

$ bundle exec rspec -t focus

You should see that RSpec only runs the specifications that have this flag.

Generating Code Coverage

To generate a code coverage report when running tests using simplecov, set the COVERAGE environment variable as follows when running the tests:

$ COVERAGE=true bundle exec rake spec

You’ll see a total coverage score as well as a link to the HTML report in the output. The HTML report helps you understand which lines and branches were missed, if any.

Despite being fast, the downside of using simplecov is that it misses branches. You can use deep-cover to generate a more thorough report. To do so, set the COVERAGE environment variable as follows when running the tests:

$ COVERAGE=deep bundle exec rake spec

You’ll see a total coverage score, a detailed coverage report, and a link to HTML report in the output. The HTML report helps you understand which lines and branches were missed, if any.

Running the Code Linter

Before you commit code, you should run it through the linter to make sure it adheres to the coding style. You can run the linter using the following command:

$ bundle exec rake lint

The coding style is enforced by Rubocop. The rules are defined in .rubocop.yml. These rules extend from the default rule set provided by Rubocop to match the style of the project.

Installing the Gem Locally

You can install the development version of the gem as follows:

$ bundle exec rake install

This allows you to use an unreleased version of the gem to build your site.

If you want to build the gem and install it yourself, use these commands instead:

$ bundle exec rake build
$ [sudo] gem install pkg/jekyll-asciidoc-*.dev.gem

Releasing the Gem

When you are ready for a release, first set the version in the file lib/jekyll-asciidoc/version.rb. Then, commit the change using the following commit message template:

Release X.Y.Z

where X.Y.Z is the version number of the gem.

Next, package, tag and release the gem to, run the following rake task:

$ bundle exec rake release
Ensure you have the proper credentials setup as described in the guide Publishing to

Once you finish the release, you should update the version to the next micro version in the sequence using the .dev suffix (e.g.,

About the Project

The Jekyll AsciiDoc plugin, a plugin for the static site generator Jekyll, is a member project of the Asciidoctor organization. This plugin is developed and supported by volunteers in the Asciidoctor community.


This plugin was created by Dan Allen and Paul Rayner and has received contributions from many other individuals in the Asciidoctor community.

Copyright © 2013-2018 Dan Allen, Paul Rayner, and the Asciidoctor Project. Free use of this software is granted under the terms of the MIT License. See LICENSE for details.

1. Hidden files and folders are automatically excluded by Jekyll.
2. The prefix used to label page attributes can be customized.


💉 A Jekyll plugin that converts AsciiDoc source files in your site to HTML pages using Asciidoctor.



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