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A pilaster, pier, or body of masonry projecting beyond the main face of the wall and intended to strengthen the wall at particular points and also to counterbalance the thrust of a roof or its vaulting. The term "counterfort" is used when the projection is on the inside. A flying buttress is an arch, resting at one end on a detached pier and it carries the thrust of the nave vault over the aisles or cloister.
APA citation. (1908). Buttress. In The Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/03092a.htm
MLA citation. "Buttress." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 3. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1908. <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/03092a.htm>.
Ecclesiastical approbation. Nihil Obstat. November 1, 1908. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., Censor. Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York.
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