The air-sea exchange in the Black Sea is revisited in the paper on the base of data provided from the ECMWF atmospheric re-analysis for the period 1979-1993. Climatological characteristics of analysis data are compared against available climatic data, demonstrating quite a good consistency. Several drawbacks are found: too low temperatures in the easternmost part of the sea, too low dew point temperature and slight underestimation of precipitation. However, the seasonal and inter-annual oscillations are resolved correctly, as well as the horizontal patterns of air-sea exchange. The shallow penetration of thermal signal in the Black Sea is well detected by the very small heat transports inferred from the ECMWF data. Thus, the conclusion is that the analysis 'sees' quite well the major thermal peculiarity of the Black Sea associated with its extremely small thermal inertia caused by the specific stratification. (C) 2001 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.