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ReStructuredText extensions.

Project description

is a package that provides some ReStructuredText extensions. The extensions collected in this package provide support for some of the markup used in RestructuredText documents of the stock Python documentation toolchain. Also a pygments directive (written by Georg Brandl) is included, which enables syntax highlighting of code fragments in reStructuredText docs with the pygments package.

See README.txt in the src/ulif/rest directory for API documentation.

Note, that this is alphaware! Do not use it in productive environments!


You need:

Other needed packages will be downloaded during installation. Therefore you need an internet connection during installation.


Normally, this package should from other packages, that use it as a helper lib. Thus, you do not have to care for installation. If you want to integrate in your project, just declare as a required package in your

with buildout

You can install this package with buildout as follows:

From the root of the package run:

$ python2.4 bootstrap/

This will download and install everything to run buildout in the next step. Afterwards an executable script buildout should be available in the freshly created bin/ directory.

Next, fetch all needed packages, install them and create provided scripts:

$ bin/buildout

This should create a test script in bin/.


$ bin/test

you can test the installed package.

with easy_install

Run as a superuser:

# easy_install

This should make the package available in your system Python.


See README.txt and other .txt files in the src/ulif/rest/ directory for API documentation.

Detailed Documentation

RestructuredText (ReST) Extensions

What is this?

The extensions collected in this package provide support for some of the markup used in RestructuredText documents of the stock Python documentation toolchain.

RestructuredText is a document markup language with special human readable markup, that is widely spread in the Python world. RestructuredText documents are a bit like HTML but better readable. The text you are reading, for example, is written as ReST.


to learn more about ReST (and docutils).

Normally, ReST documents can be processed with tools of the Python package docutils. The docutils include so-called readers, parsers, writers and publishers for reading ReST documents and writing various output formats like HTML, XML or LaTeX.

Since Python switched from LaTeX to ReST documentation with the 2.6 version, some special markup was introduced like function, seealso or versionchanged, that helps to describe a programming API more precisely. These additional ‘tags’, however, needed specialized readers, parsers, writers and publishers to be understood. The normal docutils tools did not understand the new roles and directives.

This package makes it possible to use the standard docutils parsers and writers with the additional roles and directives listed below.

Prerequisites and requirements

  • docutils – version 0.4 is recommended.

    It can be retrieved from

  • Pygments – a syntax highlighter.

    It can be retrieved from This is only needed, if you want syntax highlighting of code fragments in your ReST documents.

    Because there is currently only support for HTML with pygments, you won’t use it for other output formats. In this case you don’t need pygments.

Both packages can also retrieved via cheeseshop and easy_install.

Activate support for the additional set of roles/directives

Just import the modules in this package:

from import directives_plain
from import roles_plain
from import pygments_directive # for syntax-highlighting support

That’s it. The modules define and register the new roles and directives with the docutils automatically. You don’t have to call a special function.

Running the tests

Call tests/ with your favourite Python interpreter:

$ python tests/

Note, that docutils must be available in your PYTHON_PATH.

If you installed the source version with buildout (not an egg), you can generate a buildout executable in the bin/ directory of the source root and run:

$ bin/test

Which roles and directives are supported:

pygments_directive adds the following new directives:

  • sourcecode – a directive to highlight syntax of the following

    code block. It takes one parameter, the language, and currently only supports HTML output.


    .. sourcecode:: python
       class Cave(object):
    This will render the class definition with
    An additional optional parameter is ``linenos``,
    which adds linenumbers to the code::
    .. sourcecode:: python
       class NumberedCave(object):
    will render the code block with line numbering.
    See the source for further options.
  • code-block – an alias for sourcecode.

directives_plain adds the follwing new directives:

  • function – a directive to describe functions with their


  • data – ???

  • class – a directive to define a Python class.

  • method – a directive to describe the method of a Python class.

  • attribute – a directive to describe an attribute of a Python


  • exception – a directive to describe an exception.

  • cmdoption – a directive to describe a command option.

  • envvar – a directive to describe an environment variable.

  • describe – a directive to describe something.

  • seealso – a directive to add a ‘See also’ subsection. It requires

    some ‘body’-text.

  • deprecated – a directive to add a deprecation warning. It also

    requires some explanatory body text and a version number.

  • versionadded – a directive to add a note that tells, in which

    version the surrounding thing was added to the API.

    Requires a version number and an explanatory text.


    .. versionadded:: 0.11
       Added for convenience reasons.
  • versionchanged – a directive to add a note that tell, in which

    version a signature or something else changed and why.


    .. versionchanged:: 0.11
      Added cave parameter, because every caveman
      needs a cave.
  • toctree – a directive that requests to generate a

    table-of-contents tree of files, given in the body part of the directive. The so-called toc-tree will not be generated by standard writers, because it needs at least two parsing passes (one to collect all references, another pass to generate the reference targets).

    If you insert a toctree directive in a document, this will not block parsing of the document any more, but the toctree will be ‘invisible’ in rendered documents.

    The toctree directive supports a maxdepth parameter, a number, that tells, to which depth a toctree should be generated (default: no limit).


    .. toctree::
       :maxdepth: 2
    This should render a table of contents with the
    headings of the three given files. Only headers of
    level 1 and 2 will be included in the toctree.

roles_plain adds the following new roles:

  • data

  • exc

  • func

  • class

  • const

  • attr

  • meth

  • cfunc

  • cdata

  • ctype

  • cmacro

  • mod

  • keyword

  • ref

  • token

  • term

  • file

  • samp

Every role can be used like this :<rolename>:<text>. For example:


will output the text my_function, rendered in a different way than normal text. The exact kind of rendering depends on the writer and translator that is used. In usual HTML writers it will be rendered with roman fonts.

The same applies to all the other roles.


0.1.0 (2008-02-24)

Feature changes

  • Initial Release


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