Hylians are humanoid creatures with pointy ears, those ears being a sign of Hylian descent. Their ears supposedly allow them to hear the voices of the gods. Hylians are the first race to establish civilization in Hyrule
, and unlike most other races in the franchise, they consistently settle in modern, highly populated areas. The word Hyrule originates from the Hylian race, as they originally settled there.
Contrary to popular belief, Hylians are not always Human, though they seem to inherit the title on occasion (cultural expressions, clichés, etc). The only official
declaration of human existence takes place in Twilight Princess
, when Ordon Village is revealed to be inhabited by Humans, Link being an exception. Other than this account, there are no accounts of Humanity.
Do not confuse the term Hylian with Hyrulian
. Hyrulians are a race in Hyrule. A Hylian is any specific race of beings in Hyrule, of which Link is usually a part of.