The Communist Party of Russia emerged from the Bolshevik faction of the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party, under the leadership of Vladimir Lenin. Founded in 1905, it was a mass organization consisting primarily of workers under a democratic internal hierarchy governed by the principle of democratic centralism, who considered themselves the leaders of the revolutionary working class of Russia. Their beliefs and practices were often referred to as Bolshevism.
After Lenin's death in 1926, the Bolsheviks renamed itself the Communist Party of Russia and purged itself of its radical members who argued for a violent overthrowing of the Imperial government. It remained a major party in the Russian Duma until the reforms of Tsar Alexis II turned Russia into a constitutional monarchy. Following these reforms, the Communist Party began to decline and today only holds a handful of chairs in the Duma.
Its organization is subdivided into communist parties of the constituent Russian states. It has a small youth organization called Komsomol. It is a member of Communist International.