Don't you hate it when you're reading something about The Legend of Zelda and a crazy word you've never heard of suddenly pops up? Me too. So I've compiled a modest list of some basic LoZ terms for the novice heroes of time.
A term commonly used to describe various plant life in Hyrule. Some are items (Deku Leaf, Deku Stick), others refer to actual living creatures (The Great Deku Tree, Deku Scrubs). This label is used all over Hyrule and in many of the games.
Small creatures with wooden bodies who are found in forests. As a defense mechanism, these creatures spit Deku Nuts at their enemies. Their mouths are cylindrical, and their bodies are usually adorned with leaves instead of typical clothing.
A race of people living in the desert regions of Hyrule, and mostly compromised of females. In fact, only one Gerudo male is born every one-hundred years (can you guess who's the lucky guy in many of the Zelda games?). The Gerudo are known best as thieves, and have built an extensive reputation as fierce warriors. When it comes to physical appearance, their ears are rounded, unlike the Hylians, and their skin a rich tan color (probably from living in the desert sun). All have red hair as well, and very long and narrow noses. Their typical clothing style centers around Arabic fashion.
The race of rock people who live in the mountainous regions of Hyrule. Their bodies are stout and muscular, and when they roll themselves up into balls and roll around, anything in their path will be trampled and destroyed. Their diets consist of rocks and lava, and their communities are close-knit. Because of that, they are wary of outside people and races. However, once someone proves his or her mettle, the Gorons consider them friends. Their skin is an orange color, and their bodies are almost entirely covered in tattooes. There doesn't appear to be any female Gorons; whether none have made an appearance yet or if there are no possible females in the race is unknown.
Knights of Hyrule
Protectors of the Hyrule royal family, the Knights of Hyrule are a band of military warriors who have been around for centuries. They are featured in many Zelda games, but had their most prominent role in A Link to the Past by assisting in the imprisonment of Ganondorf in the Sacred Realm alongside the Seven Sages.
A group of children who live in the Kokiri Forest and are usually accompanied by a fairy companion. Their physical characteristics are very similar to those of the Hylians, such as pointy ears, but are technically not Hylians. They were created by the Kokiri Forest's guardian The Great Deku Tree. In The Ocarina of Time, it is here in Kokiri Forest where Link is raised among the Kokiri as their equal, although he's a Hylian and soon must leave the forest. Their homes and businesses are hallowed-out trees. The female inhabitants wear green dresses and headbands, whereas the males wear green tunics with pointy hats. In The Wind Waker, the player encounters the Great Deku Tree again, except this time he lives on the island called Forest Haven with the Koroks. The game implies that Koroks were once Kokiri children who evolved into these little woodland creatures many years ago.
The term used to refer to members of the Hylian race, namely if they live in Hyrule. They're almost identical to humans in appearance, except for their very pronounced pointy ears. There are many towns and villages highly populated with Hylians; much of Hyrule is composed of Hylians. Link, Zelda, and Saria are just a few notable examples of members of the Hylian race.
An umbrella term that refers to anyone who lives in the land of Hyrule, regardless of race.
The land in which 95% of Zelda games take place in. It's usually portrayed as a kingdom surrounded more by wilderness than actual cities. There are, however, villages scattered through the Hyrule landscape, typically nestled right into nature and inhabited by a colorful array of races and people. It's ruled under a monarchy, hence the title of "Princess" in front of Zelda's name. In some games it's ruled by Zelda's father, sometimes by Zelda herself. The laws of the land seem pretty basic: don't bring harm to others and you're pretty much cool. The royal family derive from their ancestor and original ruler of Hyrule Goddess Hylia. The legendary Triforce is hidden within the kingdom's limits in a location known only to a select few, if that.
Minish (also known as Picori) are a race of extremely small people found in The Minish Cap. They came to Hyrule from their world many years ago when the world was threatened by darkness and gave the Hero of Men a powerful weapon that could save Hyrule: The Picori Sword. Every one-hundred years the Hyruleans celebrate their contribution to saving the world during an event called The Picori Festival.
A race of small bird-like people who hail from the City in the Sky. Their bodies resemble those of bird with long necks, but their heads are very similar to those of humans. Their appearance doesn't seem like much, but these people are capable of many of the things most of the inhabitants of Hyrule are capable of, such as creating cannons powerful enough to launch someone to amazing heights and the Dominion Rod, and authored the Ancient Sky Book. They also seem to have the ability to warp from one location to another.
Rod of Seasons
A magical talisman found in Oracle of Seasons, which grants its user the ability to change the current season into a different one by standing on a tree stump and swinging the rod. It's located in the Temple of Seasons after it mysteriously appeared in the lava-infested city of Subrosia.
The universal currency in Hyrule. The value of a rupee is determined by its color: one blue rupee is worth 5 rupees, a green one is worth 1 rupee, and red ones are worth 20 rupees. The catch? The values of rupees vary in each game, although the amounts for these three colors stay pretty much the same. Plus there are a ton more rupee colors and values scattered through the Zelda games, but those three are the more common of the rupees a player will uncover.
Four fairy-like creatures who inhabit the Temple of Seasons in The Oracle of Seasons. Once Link has uncovered an essence can he unlock a season's power, thus granting him access to that season through the use of the Rod of Seasons. Their physical appearance greatly resembles those of the fairies found in Ocarina of Time.
The Sheikah (or Shadow People, as some know them as) are guardians to the Goddess Hylia. They continue their role today, although Hylia is no more; instead they guard the Hyrule royal family who are the descendants of Hylia. They greatly resemble Hylians in every shape and form, but these people have mastery over shadow magic. Impa is a common example of a member of the Sheikah clan in The Ocarina of Time.
Temple of Seasons
A temple that houses the spirits of the seasons (Spring, Winter, Summer, Fall) in The Oracle of Seasons. Onox transported it to the lava city of Subrosia so that the oracle of seasons' (Din) powers could be surpressed. It also holds the item the Rod of Seasons, which allows Link to change the seasons. In each corner is a tower dedicated to a season spirit.
A green Gameboy Advance-looking item with a point and a long yellow antenae. It was given to Link by Tingle in The Wind Waker, which enables its user to connect to the Gamecube via a Gameboy Advance link cable to find hidden Tingle Statues in each dungeon. When one is found Tingle will pay link 50 Rupees, and 500 if all five are recovered.
An ancient relic and bearer of immense power, the Triforce was created by the three sacred goddesses Nayru, Din and Farore. It's made up of three triangles: the Triforce of Power, the Triforce of Wisdom, and the Triforce of Courage. It is this object that Ganondorf is usually after in the Zelda franchise. Whether or not its conceived as a good thing or a bad thing, the Triforce can grant its user's wishes. Sometimes it resides in the Sacred Realm, at other times its pieces are either scattered throughout Hyrule or left inside those worthy of its power.
A village of people in The Minish Cap. They once lived in the Wind Ruins where they perfected the art of wind magic. Once they became masters of this craft, they left the Wind Ruins and lifted their village above the clouds where they remain today.
A magical instrument Link implements in The Wind Waker. It's a white conductor's wand that allows its user to control the wind and command the mystical sages when to perform their songs.
A race of aquatic water people. Their physical anatomy is closely related to the male and female anatomy of humans, with a few additions, such as gills on the sides of their abdomens, fins on their arms, flippers on their feet, tails and light-blue skin. Some live in the sea while other tribes live in rivers; there is little difference between the two tribes. They are born from eggs.
Tribe of cactus people living in the Desert of Doubt featured in The Four Swords Adventure. They are responsible for the constuction of a pyramid which holds a trident which played a role in Ganondorf becoming the King of Darkness.