From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
In 1521, the tradesman Jean Dinocheau had a chapel built on the outskirts of Paris, which he dedicated to Saint Susanna. In 1577, his nephew Etienne Dinocheau had it extended into a larger church. In 1629, it became the parish church and it thereafter underwent further work. The first stone of the Church of Saint Roch (Église Saint-Roch) was laid by Louis XIV in 1653, accompanied by his mother Anne of Austria. Originally designed by Jacques Lemercier, construction was halted in 1660 and was resumed in 1701 under the direction of architect Jacques Hardouin-Mansart, brother of the better-known Jules Hardouin-Mansart. Work was finally completed in 1754. The church is organized as a series of chapels in succession. One of them is dedicated to Saint Susanna in memory of the church which used to stand in its place. In accordance, there is a mural painting above the alter, showing Saint Suzan fleeing her aggressors, and looking up to the heavens, beckoning God to help her.
The church is also notable due to Marquis de Sade marriage that happened there on May 17, 1763.
At the time of the French Revolution, the church Saint Roch was at the heart of the action and was itself the scene of many shootings, which have left their imprint on the facade.
But not just the outer part of the church was damaged. During the Revolution the church was ransacked. A great number of works of art were stolen and destroyed. Amongst the missing paintings, was one of Dinocheau, a generous donor, who built the first church on this spot. His picture, which used to hang in a side chapel has been found and is now in Italy, in the church of Santa Maria Maggiore. This portrait is now wrongly thought to be that of Paul Feminis.
Notable tombs in the church included those of Denis Diderot, Baron d'Holbach,Henri de Lorraine-Harcourt, Pierre Corneille, André le Nôtre, Marie Anne de Bourbon (daughter of Louis XIV) and Marie-Thérèse Rodet Geoffrin.