Welcome to Visual Dictionary, a series of posts about words that are better expressed in pictures.
This is a buttress. A buttress is a support built against a wall to reinforce it.
Buttress can also be used metaphorically, as a noun or a verb.
To score highly on the GRE essays, you should buttress your arguments with relevant and specific examples.
She never wore her contact lenses; she felt that her image as an intellectual requried the buttress of a sharp pair of glasses.
Before approaching the Princess of Monaco with his famous line, “Did someone leave the oven door open or did your face start a heat wave?”, he buttressed his courage with a gin and tonic.