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I found in an old Magento 1.3 installation following code in an email template:

{{block type="symmetrics_impressum/impressum" value="emailfooter"}}

It works and this snippet implement my imprint in system-emails. But I have no idea, where emailfooter is located. I need this for transfer in a new system. Can anybody explain, how type and value works?

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Here type is required, others attributes are optional. In your case symmetrics_impressum block name which is declared in config.xml and impressum is the actual class.

symmetrics_impressum reffers to app/code/[local/community]/VendorName/ModuleName/Block.

Your block class is:

app/code/[local/community]/VendorName/ModuleName/Block/Impressum.php

Inside block and related phtml file, you can access value by getValue that you declared as an attribute.

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