After the Roman conquest and the retreat of the imperial garrison from Sarmizegetusa, the ruins remained deserted. Nevertheless, people in the area always returned to the ruins which, in time, entered the collective conscience.
The treasure hunters periodically startled the local people's interest for the ancient monuments and brought the remains to scholars’ attention.
In the same conditions, in the beginning of the XIXth century, the Austrian state undertook systematic research for ancient material traces of Sarmizegetusa. That moment marks the beginning of a new era in the knowledge of Orăştie Mountains monuments.
Starting in the 20's, in the XXth century, professors of the University of Cluj, some also Directors of the National Museum of Transylvanian History developed a program of systematic archaeological research for the Orăştie Mountains. The names of Dimitrie M. Teodorescu, or, later, Constantin Daicoviciu, Hadrian Daicoviciu, Ioan Horatiu Crişan, or Ioan Glodariu are the most prominent. To them and to many others we owe the attention of the large public towards the Orăștie monuments and towards the historical context leading to their construction.
In 2012 started the Multiannual Archaeological Research Program for the Orăștie Mountains financed by the Romanian Ministry of Culture and coordinated by the National Museum of Transylvanian History of Cluj. It aims to the investigation by modern means and methods of the entire area, the scientific publication and the valorisation for the public of the research results. Until the present day, this is the most important archaeological project ever endeavoured in Romania.