Buttress. A mass of masonry or brickwork projecting from or built against a wall to give additional strength, usually to counteract the lateral thrust of an arch, roof or vault.

Flying Buttress. An arch or half-arch transmitting the thrust of a vault or roof from the upper part of a wall to an outer support or buttress.

-- John Fleming, Hugh Honour & Nikolaus Pevsner, 1991
The Penguin Dictionary of Architecture
Penguin Books, London, England

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