When a young man feels that a young woman could turn out to be his true love, the
question that’s bound to be on his mind is “Is the woman I plan to marry pure? Is she chaste?”
Well, now I have found the means of finding out with complete certainty. It comes from my trusty Perpetual Almanack of Folklore, and the method is from one William Coles, who clearly knew a thing or two, writing in 1657:
It is said that if the juice of the roots of nettles be mixed with ale and beer, and given to one that is suspected to have lost her maidenhood, if it remaineth with her she is a maid, but if she spew it forth she is not.
So give it a try, lads. (But stand well back.)