The Russian Revolution is the name given to a set of revolutions that happened in Russia during 1917. Prior to these revolutions Russia had been ruled by a royal family who had absolute power over the country of Russia and the church. The catalyst of the first revolution in February of 1917 was the heavy military set back that had occurred during the First World War. Much of the army thought that their leadership was inadequate and was in a state of munity. The leadership fop the army felt that they did not have the power to suppress the revolt by the people and Tsar Nicholas II of Russia, the last Tsar of Russia, abdicated. In the chaos that happened after this abdication a provisional government was set up from the members of the imperial parliament. They were allowed to remain in control as long as they granted certain rights, such as some government and military control, to the Soviet factions present in the country. This resulted in a period of dual power where the provisional government held state power, but the national network of Soviets, led by socialists, had the allegiance of the lower-class citizens and the political left.
The second revolution came about because of a decision made by the provisional government to continue fighting the Germans. The Bolshevik party, led by Vladimir Lenin campaigned for a cease fire and an end to the war. The Bolshevik formed militia work parties into an army called the Red Guard. In October of 1917 the Bolshevik party, led by Vladimir Lenin overthrew the provisional government in St. Petersburg. They gained control of the country and formed a security organization called the Cheka to quash dissent. This was the start of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR).
This was not Russia’s first revolution with a major social revolution taking place in 1905. During this revolution Russia underwent extreme social reform including the formation of an imperial parliament and greater rights for all Russian citizens.