Meaning of “handbag” in the English Dictionary

american-english dictionary

"handbag" in British English

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handbagnoun [ C ]

uk /ˈhænd.bæɡ/ us /ˈhænd.bæɡ/ US also purse

A2 a small bag for money, keys, make-up, etc., carried especially by women


  • I've got far too much clobber in my handbag.
  • She took her hairbrush from her handbag and began to brush her hair.
  • Her handbag was snatched from her in the street.
  • She beat off her attacker by hitting him with her handbag.
  • I scooped up my belongings into my handbag.

(Definition of “handbag” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"handbag" in American English

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handbagnoun [ C ]

us /ˈhændˌbæɡ/

a bag, often with a handle or a strap going over the shoulder, used esp. by women for carrying money, keys, and small personal items such as makeup; purse

(Definition of “handbag” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)