cacata carta, a diminutive of merda (poop). But then a little pondering recalls the Indo-European "Dropped S" where an "s" at the beginning of common root words was dropped in many language branches. Thus, "smerd" became "merda" in Latin, but śmierdzieć in Polish.
And so, our "smee" is still in play, especially as an archaic Latin term already fading away in the days of the Republic. As the Mythbusters would say, "plausible".
I still lean towards the theory that "smee" is plural, and more properly transcribed "smii" (each "i" is pronounced as "ee", so you would say this as "sm-ee-ee").
What a strange set of rabbit holes this Internet thing is. You can drop into one, and never know what is on the other end. Tam clearly knows her Indo-European roots (I'd hate to play the Dictionary Game against her, because I hate to lose). And so,
Ave Tam Imperatrix,* Oh, and you think that Glock vs. 1911 leads to outbreaks of terminal pedanticness? I love this comment on the proper translation of the Catullus verse:
declenuri te salutant!
Hail Empress Tam,
we who are about to decline salute you!
No, cacata carta is not an ablative absolute construction, as is clear from the meter - the -a on cacata must be short, therefore it cannot be the ablative singular of the perfect passive participle, but must rather be nominative. The phrase is in apposition to the nominative Annales. Literally - "having been shat sheets".Win. So what's the muzzle velocity of a cacata carta loading?
(Yes, I am a nerd. Why did you even have to ask Oh, and I still think that smee is somewhere in Catullus ...?)