LUNDY: Untidy Little Island

"Here is no entrance except for friends," wrote one historian of the forbidding little (1.6 sq. mi.) island of Lundy. Rising like a granite fang out of the churning waters off the coast of Devon, the "isle of Puffins" has survived assault by the Spaniard, the Turk, the Frenchman and the Dutchman. But in all the 800 years since the King of England gave it over to one of his favorite barons, it has bowed to no nation for long—not even to its great neighbor, Britain.

The crumbling walls of its Angevin castle still keep guard over Lundy's only landing place,...