His work reflects the scope and purpose of Peter the Great's European-style reforms, standing out as a contribution to the integration of Russian culture into the world circuit of Classicism. In this respect, the most noticeable effort is his Petrida, an unfinished epic glorifying the Emperor.
From 1731 he was Russian envoy to London (where he brought along the manuscript to Dimitrie's History of the Growth and Decay of the Ottoman Empire, also writing the biography and bibliography of his father that accompanied the English 1756 edition). From 1736 until his death, Antiokh was minister plenipotentiary in Paris, where he was a noted intellectual figure and close friend to Montesquieu and Voltaire.
Kantemir's language seems dull and antiquated to the modern reader, because he stuck to the gallic system of rhyming, which was subsequently discarded. His best known poems are several satires in the manner of Juvenal, including To My Mind: On Those Who Blame Education and On the Envy and Pride of Evil-Minded Courtiers.