The refer-clojure spec added in CLJ-2062 supports only limited quoting.
In Clojure 1.8, these are both allowed:
But in 1.9/1.10, the first is valid but the second will throw:
Cause: This is due to the way the quoted spec is defined, allowing only a quoted list rather than a quoted list of symbols or a list of quoted symbols. A similar issue is seen with import - (import ['java.util 'Date]) fails in a similar way, but it's uncommon for people to invoke import by quoting the internal symbols rather than the outer list (import '[java.util Date]).
Proposed: To match support in 1.8, would need specs that include both quoted lists of symbols and lists of quoted symbols.
Due to the rarity of this usage pattern (this is the first report in over 2 years since this was added), I'm going to mark this minor priority.