Most people know that **microwave** is short for **microwave oven**.

In English, we typically refer to things by the noun, not the adjective - for instance, we can call a green umbrella an umbrella, but not just 'a green'. Likewise, adjectives come before the noun in English.

I am pretty sure that *microwave* is the adjective and *oven* is the noun, since it is an oven that uses microwave radiation to cook food. Is there a particular reason we call 'microwave ovens' *microwaves*, or was that just to avoid confusion with a conventional oven?