Most psychologists today would assure us that, at the time of Bentham, psychology did not exist. At the same time as eminent a psychologist as Daniel Kahneman seems to favour a return to Bentham.1 And Bentham certainly has something to do with the Verri story told in this chapter. It is well known that Bentham himself acknowledged his own debt to the
Milanese school of political economy, ﬂourishing in the years 1760-80. The so-called Accademia dei Pugni, together with the periodical Il Caﬀè, was the seat of the initiatives and intellectual activity of the Milanese school. By far the best known and inﬂuential personality of the school was Cesare Beccaria. However the founder and leader of the group and the real mentor behind Beccaria was Pietro Verri. For various reasons, this is still insuﬃciently acknowledged to the present day.