Fusillo is a Neapolitan dialect term, and the old pasta makers of the Amalfi and Sorrentine coasts probably used it for this curious pasta shape, which had landed there many centuries earlier. It was made with a type of spindle-shaped ferretto called a fuso (spindle), which the Gypsies also used to use to make pasta.
Fusilli were handmade products and were widespread especially in Naples and in the provinces of the kingdom when the millers, in addition to milling the grain, used female labor to make the various pasta shapes. They were the everyday pasta among the wealthier classes.
In Italy Fusilli is usually served with a piquant ragù especially of lamb or pork, but also with vegetable-based sauces, and plenty of grated local pecorino!
Knowledge compliments of Oretta Zanini De Vita in her Encyclopedia of Pasta!