The name Assisiwork originated in the 19th century when there was a revival of this form of embroidery in the town of Assisi, Italy. In Spain, it is called "a reserva" and is found in the Avila region. It was most popular during the 16th and 17th centuries in Spain, Italy and Germany and was worked in long armed cross stitch, two sided Italian cross stitch, Montenegrin stitch and four sided stitch. In the later part of the 17th century we begin to see regular cross stitch being used. During the 19th century Italian revival, cross stitch was used exclusively and Holbein stitch borders begin to appear. A third form evolved in Colbert, France. Modernly it is also called reverse embroidery and voided embroidery.
Stalking the Wild Assisi by Baroness Kathryn Goodwyn. A very good article on the historical form of Assisiwork.
Assisi Embroidery - Delicate Threads of Pattern A small revival Assisiwork pattern and a nice little history.
Clare's AssisiworkClare's Noah's Ark Assisiwork Reproduction and the class handout based on it.