A briefcase is a narrow box-shaped bag made of vinyl or leather with a handle on the end and is used mainly for carrying papers and other documents. The term 'briefcase' originates because lawyers typically used the cases to present 'briefs' to court. Naturally, businessmen and other professionals also use briefcases to carry important papers, laptops, brochures, food, cell phones among other things required on a daily basis, typically while going to and from the office.
Most briefcases can be traced to the use of a limp satchel used in the 14th century for carrying money, gold, jewels and other values. This form of limp satchel was typically referred to as a "budget" which of course was derived from the Latin word 'bulga' or Gaelic word 'bolg' both of which meant 'leather bag', and that’s where we also get the financial term: bourse.
The Parisian, Godillot, first used a hinged iron frame on a specific carpetbag early in the 19th Century. Then followed the Gladstone bag and the Rosebery, an oval-top bag - a model still manufactured but still considered somewhat obsolete. Eventually these became the modern metal frame briefcase or framed attache.
The ridgid framed briefcase so common in the 1960s slowly and surely changed to a lighter, softer and more flexible briefcase which is what we have come to think of when we say the word 'briefcase' However, the latest trends show the significance of women entering the work force in large numbers. While traditionally a male dominated product line, the influence and desire of women to possess feminine style briefcases has prompted a range of introductions to appeal to women. A woman's briefcase really serves the same functions as a man's briefcase; however, it can be said that woman's briefcases can only be carried by women, however, if it is designed for a man, it is typically considered suitable for both sexes.