Kiln documentation

Kiln is an open source multi-platform framework for building and deploying complex websites whose source content is primarily in XML. It brings together various independent software components, with Apache Cocoon at their centre, into an integrated whole that provides the infrastructure and base functionality for such sites.

Kiln is developed and maintained by a team at the Department of Digital Humanities (DDH), King’s College London. Over the past years and versions, Kiln (formerly called xMod) has been used to generate more than 50 websites which have very different source materials and customised functionality. Since DDH has in-house guidelines for using TEI P5 to create websites, Kiln makes use of certain TEI markup conventions. However, it has been adapted to work on a variety of flavours of TEI and other XML vocabularies, and has been used to publish data held in relational databases.

Further reading

Apache Cocoon is at the core of Kiln, please consult its documentation for more detailed information on how to configure its components.


Java 1.5+ is required to run the Kiln webapps. In order to use the built-in Jetty web server (for local, development use only), Java 1.7 is required.


See our issue tracker.


Kiln comes with a tutorial that covers using the main components of Kiln, and is recommended for new users.