The term "purse" originally referred to a small bag for holding coins.In British English, it is still used to refer to a small coin bag.
The term handbag began appearing in the early 1900s.
Initially, it was most often used to refer to men's hand-luggage.
Women's bags grew larger and more complex during this period, and the term was attached to the accessory.
The verb's more general meaning of "treating ruthlessly" came to symbolise Thatcher's whole style of government.
He stipulated that he wanted various handbags for his wife, varying in size for different occasions and asked that they be made from the same leather that was being used for his cases and trunks to distinguish them from the then-familiar carpetbag and other travelers' cloth bags used by members of the popular classes. These are now on display in the Museum of Bags and Purses in Amsterdam. Since the 1990s, designers have marketed a more diverse range of accessory bags for men. The designs are typically variations on backpacks or messenger bags, and have either a masculine or a more unisex appearance, although they are often more streamlined than a backpack and less bulky than a briefcase.
These bags are often called messenger bags or organizer bags. Demand is strong after several years of popularity, possibly supported by the growing range of modern electronic devices men carry with them.Men's designer bags are produced by well-known companies such as Prada, Louis Vuitton, Coach, and Bottega Veneta in a variety of shapes and sizes.The global men's bag and small leather goods trade is a billion a year industry.Julian Critchley, one of her biggest Tory backbench critics, once said, "Margaret Thatcher and her handbag is the same as Winston Churchill and his cigar." Early modern Europeans wore purses for one sole purpose: to carry coins.Purses were made of soft fabric or leather and were worn by men as often as ladies; the Scottish sporran is a survival of this custom.In the 17th century, young girls were taught embroidery as a necessary skill for marriage; this also helped them make very beautiful handbags.