The Twelfth Dalai Lama, Thinle Gyatso , was born on 1st December 1856 in Lhoka, a place near Lhasa to Phuntsok Tsewang and Tsering Yudon. At that time, there had been three nominations for the reincarnation of the Dalai Lama. The names of all three were put in the golden vase for the final selection, and the name which came out was recognized as the true reincarnation of Dalai Lama.
In 1858, the young boy as Dalai Lama was escorted to Lhasa where Reting Ngawang Yeshi Tsultrim Gyaltsen, the regent, gave him the name Thupten Gyatso. In 1860 at the age of five he took the novice vows of monkhood from the Gaden Throne Holder Lobsang Khenrab and was enthroned at the Potala Palace.
In 1873, at the age of eighteen, he took on full responsibility as both spiritual and political leader of Tibet. In 1875, he died at the age of twenty in the Potala Palace.