PHP template system that's fast, easy to use and easy to extend.

2.1.0 2014-11-25 16:03 UTC

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Last update: 2024-04-13 12:43:20 UTC


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PHP template system that's fast, easy to use and easy to extend.

  • Plain PHP, no new syntax to learn.
  • Framework-agnostic, will work with any project.

About Brick

Brick is not a template engine that would lex/parse template as a string (think Twig).

Some of you might remember Chad Minick's article "Simple PHP Template Engine" (2009; Has it been that long?). I have been using a variation of an abstraction following the principles outlined in Chad's article for a long time. Brick is the final of the gang. I am happy with the API, I am happy with the inheritance rules, scope definition; it is perfect!

I am using Brick in several freelance projects and I am making it open to others. I am looking for people who share the same mindset about what template processing in PHP should be. Contributors and critique is welcome.



  • Handles not found template files
  • Protects from directory traversal attacks (at the template inclusion level)
  • Isolates template execution scope

The following examples together with the included unit tests will set you going. Please raise an issue if you feel that there are bits that need to be clarified.



System class is responsible for template resolution and scope management.

Public methods:


Subsystem class is responsible for template resolution and scope management.

Views that are built using an instance of System will be using Subsystem to produce inner views. This restricts a template access to controlling the globals and other sensitive variables.

Public methods:


Template class is responsible for isolating template execution scope, extracting scope variables and capturing the output buffer.

Public methods:

Getting Started

Producing a View

// Set the absolute path to the folder containing templates.
$system = new \Gajus\Brick\System(__DIR__ . '/templates');
// Refer to the template using a path relative to the template folder.
echo $system->view('foo');

Template file must have a ".php" extension. When referring to templates, do not include the file extension. You can change the name of the extension:


View Scope

  • $system an instance of Subsystem.
  • $globals variables shared across all views produced by the same instance of System.
  • Variables assigned to the view at the time of producing the view.

Assigning Variables

Scope variables are extracted to the execution context of the template, i.e. template can access them as regular variables.

// template_that_is_using_foo_variable.php

Scope variables are assigned at the time of producing a view.

$system->view('template_that_is_using_foo_variable', ['foo' => 'bar']); // 'bar'


Views produced using the same instance of the System have access to a $globals variables.

$system->getGlobals(['foo' => 'bar']);
$system->view('template_that_is_using_foo_variable'); // 'bar'