I've read the following:
"I never received a syllable of thanks".
Can we also say:
We haven't had a syllable of rain this month.
He doesn't have a syllable of money.
The team has a syllable of chance of avoiding relegation.
tr.v., -bled, -bling, -bles.
- A unit of spoken language consisting of a single uninterrupted sound formed by a vowel, diphthong, or syllabic consonant alone, or by any of these sounds preceded, followed, or surrounded by one or more consonants.
- One or more letters or phonetic symbols written or printed to approximate a spoken syllable.
- The slightest bit of spoken or written expression: Do not alter a syllable of this message.
To pronounce in syllables.
[Middle English sillable, from Anglo-Norman, alteration of Old French sillabe, from Latin syllaba, from Greek sullabē, from sullabein, second aorist of sullambanein, to combine in pronunciation : sun-, syn- + lambanein, to take.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition Copyright © 2004, 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Last edited by MikeNewYork; 29-Nov-2006 at 20:20.
Your three versions don't work,. as Mike said. Corrected versions would be these:
We haven't had a drop of rain this month.
He doesn't have a bean/cent [you don't say 'of money']
The team has a ghost of a chance of avoiding relegation.
The word cent is used even in BE; also it can be intensified by the adjective red: 'not a red cent'. You can also say 'not a penny', or even 'he hasn't got two pennies to rub together'.
In the last case, if the team had no chance, it would be 'not an earthly chance' - 'earthly chance' is a collocation that works only with a negative (as does 'red cent').