Purses, or "handbags", have been around since the 16th century. No one really knows for sure who invented the exact concept of the purse but one could venture a guess or two. People might think that a woman invented the purse, but alas, it very well could have been a man. A very smart man who just couldn't handle carrying his wife's little knickknacks all in his hands every time they went out. Too scared to admit it yet frustrated at his predicament, he must have conjured up a handbag-type object in order to effectively lump his lady's possessions all in one. Result? Happy wife, even happier husband, and new fashion object born.