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There are rules but they are rather unhelpful in use. Eg: the acute accent (') is only used on é. That still doesn't tell you when and where it should be used.
Basically it is simpler to just consider it as spelling which means, just like in English, you have to remember how each word is spelled. In English, some words have an e on the end which may or may not affect pronunciation . Some don't. You just have to remember. Same with diacritical marks in French.