Hylian? Say what now? Pronunciation woes.

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#1 Posted by Jertje (128 posts) -

One of the great aspects of voice acting in a series which has long been without it, is that childhood memories get torn apart by (seemingly) odd pronunciations.

Has anyone else had the odd experience where every character is pronouncing Hylian wrong? In my mind it is, and always has been 'healian'. Like you know, Healing... and the name Ian. This Highlian thing is really off-putting to me!

Link is from High-rule. He is a Healian. He has a Healian shield. The first time the King (minor first hour character spoiler) said it 'wrong' I think I actually said "What!? What's a Highlian, dog?" out loud. You'd think this character would know how to pronounce Hylian correctly... which leads me to:

This is either the part where I find out the world is crazy*, or I am crazy. Is anyone on my side of the line? :D

*Including all the inhabitants of this place. What do they know?

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#2 Posted by Teddie (1733 posts) -

I don't know how you'd get "Heal" from "hyl", especially when you know the correct way to pronounce "Hyrule". I could accept "Hill-ian", but definitely not "Heal-ian". You're nuts! NUTS!!

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#3 Edited by LeStephan (944 posts) -

Yep, Im sorry, you are definitely the crazy one here :)

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#4 Edited by Ezekiel (1992 posts) -

No, I've always pronounced it correctly.

However, I did mispronounce Sheikah in my head until I heard one of the Nintendo representatives name it during a demo.

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#5 Posted by probablytuna (4984 posts) -

They've always pronounced Hyrule as "High-rule", so I don't see how you got "Hea-lian" rather than "High-lian".

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#6 Posted by TobbRobb (6217 posts) -

I definitely never called it highlian, not quite healian either but thats closer I guess. I'd call it hylian, but pronounce the "Y" kind of like the "Y" in puppy. Hy-lian. That's probably just swedish brain damage though.

I did however always call the land Highrule, so who the fuck knows whats up.

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#7 Edited by jacksukeru (6622 posts) -

I don't see how you could think Hylian was pronounced differently than Hyrule, but I can at least sympathise with having different ideas how you pronunce Zelda things. It took me a while to get over Hyrule being pronunced High-Rule when I first learned about it. In my mind it sounded so much less interesting than the "Hiiy-ryleh" that I read it as when I played the first game.

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#8 Posted by imhungry (705 posts) -

I don't think you're crazy for thinking it's 'heal-ian', but I do think you're kinda crazy for thinking it's 'high-rule' but not 'high-lian'. What would cause you to think the two would be pronounced differently?

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#9 Posted by Darknorth (172 posts) -

Actually, all sorts of normal physical activity can break the Hylian.

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#10 Edited by bavelb (26 posts) -

I always thought it was High-rule and Hillian. However when the game pronounced it High-lian...I thought that that did make more sense considering.

Heal-ian however....no.

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#11 Posted by Bonsai (152 posts) -

I'm no psychiatrist but you're definitely out of your mind here (however, you are not the first person I've encountered with this particular form of crazy)

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#12 Posted by mrcraggle (3011 posts) -

I honestly don't get how you got from high-rule to he-lian.

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#13 Posted by Rigas (485 posts) -

. . . I don't think the world is crazy.

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#14 Posted by planetfunksquad (1446 posts) -
@bonsai said:

I'm no psychiatrist but you're definitely out of your mind here (however, you are not the first person I've encountered with this particular form of crazy)

I *am* a scientist and I can confirm that OP has one of the worst cases of Wrong Brain I've ever encountered.

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#15 Posted by OurSin_360 (5002 posts) -

It's definitely Heilian, probably translation errors...

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#16 Posted by Jertje (128 posts) -

@bonsai said:

I'm no psychiatrist but you're definitely out of your mind here (however, you are not the first person I've encountered with this particular form of crazy)

I *am* a scientist and I can confirm that OP has one of the worst cases of Wrong Brain I've ever encountered.

Now hang on now. Hang on I say.

I've taken a walk (actually, it was shopping for groceries but walking had some part in the play) and done some soul searching and come up with a reasonably plausible solution. I ain't no scientist... but let's drill down on the English language:


Pih-ramids. Not Pie-ramids.

Also not Pee-ramids - I'll give it that BUT. I am Dutch. This in and of itself is not detrimental to my being or my mastery of language but in my language many words with a y are pronounced as 'ee' (pyreneeën becomes pee-reneeën), pylon becomes pee-lon, etc). Same goes for nearly every other Dutch word with a Y in it. It's also not that uncommon in the English language: buddy; candy; aviary.

So... Hee-lian.

Not such a strange thing for a 13 year old to jump to, playing Ocarina of Time.

"But what about Hyrule, why did you get that one right?" - I think the Dutch Hy and the English Rule (R doesn't roll in English, but it does in Dutch) just can't coexist in one word. That makes it sound like a multilingual hybrid word. As such I probably picked one.

So there. Mental redemption for me?

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#17 Edited by Spoonman671 (5833 posts) -

Sorry guy, your whole childhood was a farce.

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#18 Posted by Fezrock (413 posts) -

Yeah, OP seems off here.

However, I have encountered what he's talking about elsewhere, in Final Fantasy games. As the games became voiced, and I started hearing how they wanted to pronounce some of the mainstay terms in the series, it definitely threw me for a loop.

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#19 Posted by Belegorm (1798 posts) -

Uh yeah, I think I've always pronounced it "high-lian." In our anglicized versions of names and countries, usually the first part of the words match between the name of the country and the name of a native of that country, e.g. "Russia" and "Russian," "America" and "American," and "Mexico" and "Mexican."

That said, that kind of correlation might not exist in a similar way in Dutch so I can see why you might reach a different conclusion. Hell, I don't even know if British speakers might make the same correlation as me but I'm pretty confident most Americans would.

However, could compromise and say that "Heal-ian" is the proper Dutch pronunciation of Hylian :P

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#20 Posted by Hamst3r (5310 posts) -
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#21 Posted by TheBlue (1023 posts) -

You... might be the only person to pronounce it that way, at least the first I've heard of. Would you have said Hyrulian as Heerulian even though you say Hyrule as High-rule?

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#22 Posted by sfw44 (220 posts) -

I always pronounced it as High-rule and Hilian. I have seen one video on Youtube where a guy pronounced it as Helian though.

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#23 Posted by TheHT (14680 posts) -

Hylian balloons.

Sorry duder, but add me to the "high-lian" bunch, i.e. you crazy. I know how you feel though. Used to be Ryu was "rye-you" until I saw Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie, which is a great Animated Movie (to which I'll not hear otherwise).

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#24 Posted by Efesell (2738 posts) -

Yeaaaaah I think this ones on you man.

I can definitely see 'Hilian' but can't really understand 'healian'.

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#25 Posted by Octopusrocketmark (136 posts) -

I always said "hill-ian" but I think I knew it was wrong, it had just become a habit.

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#26 Posted by ajamafalous (13602 posts) -

I, too, don't know how you got from High-rule to heal-ian

I am also sure there's a real-world example that does basically this because English is weird

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#27 Posted by Gantrathor (298 posts) -

I've always pronounced it as "hill-ian," but I never made the connection of Hylian referring to something from Hyrule because I don't pay attention to anything that happens in these games.

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#28 Posted by bombedyermom (430 posts) -

I pronounce it Hill-ian and High-rule and there's nothing you can do to stop me.

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#29 Edited by Phoenix654 (461 posts) -

I've always read it as "high-lee-an."

However, in a similar vein, I have always pronounced Kakariko Village as "cah-cah-ree-ko," so this "cah-car-i-ko" thing threw me when I first heard it. Goes right back to my problems with the name Hermione in the Potter books. She was "Her-me-own" for years in my head.

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#30 Posted by redyoshi (1414 posts) -

Dan messed with my head on the last couple of Beastcasts with his Epona pronunciation. Never had this Hylia problem though.

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#31 Posted by uhtaree (818 posts) -

It's High-lian.

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#32 Posted by BojackHorseman (690 posts) -

Always been in the Hyll-ian. Like hill, just with a slight Y in there.

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#33 Edited by dr_monocle (386 posts) -

Actually, everyone, it's spelled ghoti. Thank you.

When I was a teen I got used to saying it Ka-KAR-ri-ko just to try something different. The difference between written and spoken forms of languages is weird and awesome.

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#34 Posted by sgtsphynx (2481 posts) -

The only word so far that has been said in the game that was different from how I pronounced it has been "Deku" and I wasn't that surprised because I could see it either way. I will continue to pronounce it the same way I have been, not because it is right, but that is the way I know to pronounce it and it sounds better to me.

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#35 Posted by Corvak (1859 posts) -

I figured the choices would be Hill- and Hi- did not expect the He- But "Hillyan" makes me think of Beyond Good and Evil.

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#36 Posted by Luchalma (321 posts) -

I pronounced it Hill-ian in my head. I probably still will. I have no cause to ever say it out loud so no one will ever know but you folks.

Hearing Tidus as tee-dus though...

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#37 Edited by OurSin_360 (5002 posts) -

Its hillian, you are all wrong. It would be highrulian as a short hand for hyrule, highlian just makes no sense and sounds bad.

Also i may or may not be a scientist, so take my word as fact and move along.

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#38 Posted by Willza92 (368 posts) -

Its hillian, you are all wrong. It would be highrulian as a short hand for hyrule, highlian just makes no sense and sounds bad.

Also i may or may not be a scientist, so take my word as fact and move along.

Oh thank god Mr. Scientist. I thought I was going mad. So it is definitely Hill-e-an and not this Hi-lee-an crap. Everyone else is saying it wrong and the fairies in my head want me to punish them all.

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#39 Posted by Slag (7518 posts) -

Sorry OP, It's always been High-Rool and High-Lee-an to me

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#40 Edited by frytup (678 posts) -

@jertje said:

So there. Mental redemption for me?

I would suggest that trying to draw philosophical conclusions from English spelling is the path to madness.

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#41 Posted by FrostyRyan (2364 posts) -

You're all crazy.

What's important is this- it doesn't matter. Some words simply can be pronounced different ways. I've always said it in my head as Heelian for some reason. My friends called it Highlian. I started switching. There's probably no right way.

It doesn't matter.

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#42 Edited by BisonHero (10853 posts) -

Personally, I pronounce it high-rule and high-lian, but whatever, man, English is so wildly inconsistent on what type of 'I' sound that 'Y' words should sound like, so who cares. fwiw, the generally accepted pronunciation of words like "wyvern" (why-vern) does agree with most people's gut pronunciation of Hyrule and Hylia. Regardless, English is my native language and I pity anyone that has to learn it, because the redundancies and inconsistencies are insane.

On the other hand, Dan's pronunciation of Epona is just the worst. Sure, everybody says eePOnuh because some kind of hive mind arbitrarily decided it in 1998, but if it's not that, then I would take a pronunciation of ayyPOnuh or something similarly fanciful long before I would acknowledge Dan's EPPonuh. If it was always supposed to be EPPonuh, then they fucked up, because if it was supposed to sorta rhyme with "pepper", it should be spelled "Eppona".

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#43 Posted by Efesell (2738 posts) -

@frostyryan: I don't think it works like that once it's established though.. sort of like somebody insisting that they could pronounce my name any which way they wanted.

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