A lightweight, flat-file, easy to use & nearly-headlessΒ blogging system

I built Nicholas to be everything I wanted from a blogging system and nothing more. A pleasure to write, flexible to integrate, quick to set-up, fast to load and secure by default. It is open source in the hopes that someone else finds it useful too!

Nicholas is built with straightforward and minimal PHP and (not that they're inherently bad, but) does not require JavaScript, build steps or command line tools.

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Requires PHP >=7.1, mod_rewrite support | View Demo

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Write with Markdown, HTML (or both) using your favourite editor

Creating new content with Nicholas is simple, flexible and fast. Write in Markdown, HTML, plain text or a mixture using your favourite editor. When you're done, upload the file to your posts directory using FTP, Git, SSH or anything else you like to immediately and automatically publish your post.

Access posts, tags and archives with super simple JSON API

All of your posts are available with a super simple JSON API giving you the freedom to integrate your blog in to any website or application you are building regardless of programming language. The Nicholas API includes options to filter by post tag and date or grab just a single post.

Use the optional front-end to get blogging right away

Nicholas includes an optional front-end and theming system that you can use to get up and running with your blog within minutes. Choose from or edit one of the pre-built themes or create your own using your own HTML, CSS, PHP alongside handy helper functions.

πŸ†“ Free & open-source

Nicholas is free software licensed under MIT.

🐦 Ultra-lightweight

Less than 750KB installed with default theme.


Simple, easy-to-use JSON API for your post data.

πŸ’» Optional Frontend

Get started right away with ready-to-go frontend.

πŸ–‹ Write in Markdown

Nicholas parses Markdown Extra and accepts HTML.

πŸ”’ Secure by Default

Inherently secure with no database and no admin.

πŸ“ƒ RSS Feeds

Allow visitors to subscribe with RSS.

πŸ”– Tag Support

Filter and organise posts by tag.

⏱ 60-second install

Download, drag, drop & go. Job done.

πŸ›  No Build Step

No build step or command line requirements.

πŸ”Œ Easily Extensible

Add functionality with your own plugins & themes.

🐘 Simple PHP

Just a handful of functions working quickly & quietly.

Nicholas Themes

Browse the available pre-built themes to get a great looking Nicholas blog up and running right away.

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Admin Plugin

Create and manage your blog content via an easy to use admin interface.

Coming Soon