By the early French Revolution, the Hôtel de Lauzun was owned by the Marquis de Pimôdan, a member of the French Rite of the Templar Order. In October 1789, it was chosen as the meeting place for Élise de la Serre's ordination as Grand Master of the French Rite. An extremist faction led by François-Thomas Germain had arisen in the Order, and Élise's allies would pledge their loyalties to her.
Upon arriving with Templar initiate Jean Burnel, Élise felt uneasy about the situation, and threatened the Marquis with her sword. He revealed that her known sympathizers had either disappeared, turned to the new faction or been killed on the orders of the extremist faction's leader.
Realizing that the extremists planned to purge the conservative faction at the Hôtel de Lauzun, Élise asked the Marquis if the killers were nearby. After the Marquis nodded, Élise and Burnel made their escape as the killers dropped catgut ligatures from the roof and attempted to hang them. Burnel was killed, while Élise was able to escape by jumping in the Seine.